History of the CASCs

The National Climate Adaptation Science Center (NCASC) was established by Congress in 2008. The NCASC, and the nine regional CASCs established over the next 13 years, are tasked with providing science to help managers of the country's fish and wildlife resources adapt to climate change.  

In 2009, Secretary of the Interior Salazar signed a secretarial order recognizing the Department of the Interior (DOI) as taking the lead in protecting the country’s natural and cultural resources “from the dramatic effects of climate change that are already occurring -- from the Arctic to the Everglades”. As part of the secretarial order, the entities that were at the time referred to as regional “hubs” were renamed the DOI Climate Science Centers. The mission of the centers was expanded to include the development of science and tools to help managers address the effects of climate change on the Nation’s land, water, fish, wildlife, and cultural heritage resources. 

In 2018, the Climate Science Centers were renamed the Climate Adaptation Science Centers. Functionally, the network’s mission did not change. The changes in name more clearly aligned the national and regional centers and emphasized the centers’ focus on meeting natural resource adaptation needs. Today, there are nine regional CASCs managed by the National CASC, all housed within the USGS. 

CASC Timeline Highlights

Timeline of the CASC network's history, from 2008 to 2021

Timeline showing the history of the CASC networks, including their founding in 2008, the establishment of the eight regional CASCs (Alaska, Southeast, Northwest, 2010; North Central and Southwest, 2011, Northeast, South Central, and Pacific Islands, 2012; and Midwest in 2021), the placement of BIA Tribal Resilience Liasons at regional CASCs in 2014, and the organization's name change in 2018.

Founding Documents

In 2018, the name of the National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center was changed to the National Climate Adaptation Science Center, and the Climate Science Centers were renamed the Climate Adaptation Science Centers. You will still see our old names in the reports below. 

Program Establishment Workshops

NCCWSC 2009 National Workshop Summary, July 2009
NCCWSC 2008 National Workshop Summary, December 2008
Central Regional Workshop, June 2009
Western Regional Workshop, June 2009
Eastern Regional Workshop, May 2009

Original Planning and Strategy

National Partners Dialogue: Progress Report, November 2011
National Partners Dialogue: Final Report, November 2011
Secretarial Order No. 3289, September 2009
Secretarial Order No. 3289 - amended, February 2010
NCCWSC Five Year Planning Strategy, July 2009
Final Report on NCCWSC Outreach and Recommendations, December 2009
Advisory Committee reports and presentations, 2013-2016

Background Presentations

CASC Background, May 2018
CSC Background, March 2011
National Partners Dialogue, November 2011