CLN > Climate Change Education Projects > The Coastal Areas Climate Change Education Partnership
CACCE Logo The Coastal Areas Climate Change Education Partnership Principal Investigators: Jeffrey G. Ryan, Department of Geology ; Allan Feldman, Dept. Secondary Education; Frank Muller-Karger, College of Marine Sciences (all University of South Florida, Tampa and St. Petersburg, FL); Fernando Gilbes (CoHemis, and Geology Department, University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez); Michelle Peterson,(Biology Department, University of the Virgin Islands)

Project Website:

National Science Foundation Grant- CCEP Phase 1 Project

Project Description

Project Goals:

The Coastal Areas Climate Change Education (CACCE) Partnership project seeks to develop new strategies for educating citizens about the effects of global climate change. The project targets audiences in the formal education trajectory (K-graduate school, including teacher and college educators), informal education audiences; and business and policy/planning/regulatory audiences for whom addressing the effects of changing climate are an everyday part of the job. The core themes of CACCE emphasize
climate change impacts and effects most relevant to Florida and the Caribbean: sea level change, storm events, coastal management and water resource issues, and related geological and environmental impacts. Specific project objectives include identifying messages and approaches that will gain traction with Florida and Caribbean audiences, and establishing an extensive network of public and private sector partners, including both US and international organizations, who will work together to plan and implement an effective climate education strategy for our region.

Project Activities:

Project activities include the compilation of regionally relevant climate education and information resources, and making these available to Partnership members and the community via a Web portal hosted by the USF Libraries; the development and administration of surveys to document the climate understanding of educators, students and other audiences; the piloting and testing of an innovative
educational and research model, called Multiple Outcomes Interdisciplinary Research and Learning (MOIRL), which leverages the research capabilities of Partnership faculty to engage college students, K-12 educators and students and others in varied climate-related research activities, leading to multiple educational outcomes for the different involved stakeholder groups; and outreach efforts to other funded projects, university and non-profit laboratories and centers, and to key business and governmental/regulatory organizations that focus on the built environment.

Major Outcomes:

Our project is compiling a growing body of climate education and information resources relevant to Florida and the Caribbean. Preliminary results from surveys administered to Florida K-12 educators indicate significant attention get paid in the classroom to regionally relevant climate change impacts (i.e., sea level and water resource changes), but much less to the likely causes of climate change; and that FL MOIRL pilot projects are starting to examine the uses of phenology and speleothems in tracking climate change, climate-related impacts on urban stormwater management, and the benefits of new earth and atmospheric science curricular content in developing the climate literacy of middle school students. We have initiated discussions on cooperative efforts with Florida COSEE, the Mote Marine Laboratory, and the Florida Center for Environmental Studies (FAU), and with a range of groups and officials in Puerto Rico. We are also seeking to partner with the Caribbean Climate Change Consortium in CARICOM,
which has a longstanding climate change education and outreach initiative; and with leaders at the
University of the West Indies, and the University of the Virgin Islands.

Contact Information:

Jeffrey G. Ryan (ryan AT
Affiliation: Department of Geology, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL
Also Allan Feldman, Frank Muller-Karger, Ben Herman, Maya Trotz (University of South Florida); Fernando Gilbes (University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez); Debbi Stone (The Florida Aquarium); Larry Plank (Hillsborough County
Public Schools, FL)