Wild fire

Case Study Visualization

A scenario planning case study visualization, illustrating what a 1.2-meter sea level rise by the year 2100 would look like in a delta setting (top) under a do-nothing management option. Credit: Dave Flanders, Collaborative for Advanced Landscape Planning, University of British Columbia. Used with permission.  Credit: Dave Flanders - UBC/CALP  

Wild fire

Forest management

Higher temperatures, often combined with drought, lower soil moisture, and pest disturbances are contributing to dramatic increases in the frequency, duration, and size of wildfires in the United States since the mid-1980s.  The National Park Service has been in the vanguard of preparing for climate change impacts through the use of scenario planning.

Hoover Dam

Historic low levels of water in Lake Mead, behind Hoover Dam in the Lower Colorado River, are emblematic of the challenges that climate change poses to resource managers in the Western United States. Farmers and large urban areas in the Southwest rely on this water for potable water, power generation, and irrigation.

Wild fire

Case Study Visualization

A scenario planning case study visualization, illustrating what a 1.2-meter sea level rise by the year 2100 would look like in a delta setting (top) under a do-nothing management option. Credit: Dave Flanders, Collaborative for Advanced Landscape Planning, University of British Columbia. Used with permission.  Credit: Dave Flanders - UBC/CALP  

Wild fire

Forest management

Higher temperatures, often combined with drought, lower soil moisture, and pest disturbances are contributing to dramatic increases in the frequency, duration, and size of wildfires in the United States since the mid-1980s.  The National Park Service has been in the vanguard of preparing for climate change impacts through the use of scenario planning.

Hoover Dam

Historic low levels of water in Lake Mead, behind Hoover Dam in the Lower Colorado River, are emblematic of the challenges that climate change poses to resource managers in the Western United States. Farmers and large urban areas in the Southwest rely on this water for potable water, power generation, and irrigation. They face mandatory cuts in water deliveries if levels go below 1,075 feet above sea level at the end of December 2017, as expected.

  • Case Study Visualization

    A scenario planning case study visualization, illustrating what a 1.2-meter sea level rise by the year 2100 would look like in a delta setting (top) under a do-nothing management option. Credit: Dave Flanders, Collaborative for Advanced Landscape Planning, University of British Columbia. Used with permission.  Credit: Dave Flanders - UBC/CALP  

  • Wild fire

    Forest management

    Higher temperatures, often combined with drought, lower soil moisture, and pest disturbances are contributing to dramatic increases in the frequency, duration, and size of wildfires in the United States since the mid-1980s.  The National Park Service has been in the vanguard of preparing for climate change impacts through the use of scenario planning.

  • Hoover Dam

    Historic low levels of water in Lake Mead, behind Hoover Dam in the Lower Colorado River, are emblematic of the challenges that climate change poses to resource managers in the Western United States. Farmers and large urban areas in the Southwest rely on this water for potable water, power generation, and irrigation. They face mandatory cuts in water deliveries if levels go below 1,075 feet above sea level at the end of December 2017, as expected.

Home Page

Overview

Decision-makers and managers are increasingly being asked to make decisions in the context of uncertainty, with climate change adding new sources of complexity. Scenario planning is being used as means of providing managers with insights into options for responding appropriately to change in the near and long term. The increasing use of scenario planning prompts some questions, such as:

  • What is the state-of-the-art in scenario development?
  • How can uncertainty within scenarios be communicated effectively to stakeholders and what types of scenarios are appropriate and beneficial to pursue in a given context?
  • In using scenario planning methods: What works where, when, and why?
  • How can the effectiveness and utility of scenario planning processes be enhanced in climate adaptation work?

This website aims to help managers who are interested in learning more about scenario planning and its appropriate and best uses to guide planning to face inevitable climate challenges.  

Recent Case Study

A white paper prepared by Stratus Consulting and Denver Water for WUCA, AWWA, WRF, and AMWA discusses how utilities are changing decision-making practices due to large future uncertainties.

Featured Tool

Adaptation for Conservation Targets (ACT) is a framework for natural resource management planning in light of climate change.  

Featured Workshop

Scenario planning experts met at the University of Arizona in 2015 to examine alternative approaches to scenario planning, lessons learned in using them, and ways of extending and combining the approaches that are currently in use. 

Guides and Handbooks

June 2014

Conservation professionals face unprecedented challenges arising from changes in land use, invasive species, biodiversity, climate, and more. These changes interact in complex ways, introducing an array of uncertainties that confound natural...


July 2013

"This handbook describes the five-step process for developing multivariate climate change scenarios taught by the Global Business Network (GBN) during a series of training workshops hosted by the National Park Service in 2010 and 2011. The...


June 2013

This guidebook provides a practical step-by-step guide to developing and using scenario planning for climate adaptationm informed by recent experiences of policy makers and practitioners in Victoria.


June 2013

This document is intended to be a step‐by‐step guide to using scenarios to plan for climate change adaptation.