OAR 635-900-0003
Key Expectations Underpinning the Climate and Ocean Change Policy

(1) Based on current science, we expect that air temperatures will continue to increase and Oregon’s coastal waters will continue to acidify and become more hypoxic. These changes will result in cascading impacts that, in general, include:
(a) Changing precipitation patterns, including a decreasing trend for snowpack volume, resulting in changes in streamflow characterized by increased frequency and severity of flooding, increased flows in winter, and decreased flows in late summer and fall;
(b) An increasing trend in fresh- and marine- water temperatures;
(c) A change in wildfire patterns, including an increase in the frequency and magnitude of intense wildfires;
(d) Changing ocean currents and stratification, including changes in the frequency and magnitude of coastal upwelling; and
(e) Rising average ocean levels.
(2) We expect that these changes will not occur evenly in all habitats and that some species, biological communities, and habitats will have characteristics that make them more resistant to these changes. We also expect that these changes will not occur evenly through time. The frequency of years in which Oregon’s fish and wildlife experience good conditions will diminish and the frequency and magnitude of poor environmental conditions will increase. As a result of these changes, we expect a number of impacts, including but not limited to:
(a) Changes in the distribution and range of many fish and wildlife populations;
(b) Changes in food-webs resulting in negative effects on some key species and long term shifts of key ecosystems;
(c) Conditions in some areas will become unsuitable to support self-sustaining populations of vulnerable native species; and
(d) These changes will favor many non-native or invasive species, as well as bacteria, viruses, and parasites, and that this will negatively impact native species.
(3) While we are already observing some of these changes and expect this to continue for many decades, even if greenhouse gas reduction efforts are successful, we recognize that there is uncertainty in the timing and extent of impacts to habitat, in the ability of fish and wildlife to adapt to changes, and in how changes in one part of a food web may impact the balance of ecosystems.

Source: Rule 635-900-0003 — Key Expectations Underpinning the Climate and Ocean Change Policy, https://secure.­sos.­state.­or.­us/oard/view.­action?ruleNumber=635-900-0003.

Last Updated

Jun. 8, 2021

Rule 635-900-0003’s source at or​.us