The use of scenarios was identified by the NSSI Oversight Group as a potentially important tool in helping identify future research and monitoring needs. Scenarios can provide a means to identify a plausible range of pathways by which an uncertain future may unfold. In that way, they can then be used to help guide agency considerations for how to effectively target research and monitoring efforts in a manner that will be most useful for resource management decision-making under uncertain future conditions. A collaboration to undertake that scenarios project was formed between NSSI, the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and GeoAdaptive, LLC, an internationally experienced geospatial scenarios consultant. The focal question for the scenarios effort is:
“What is the future of energy development, resource extraction, and associated support activities on the North Slope and adjacent seas through 2040?”
The process will move from scenarios to strategies – all involved will help develop the plausible stories (scenarios) of future U.S. Arctic development; then we will assess the science needed to understand the implications of each scenario so that regardless of which scenario comes to pass, NSSI member agencies will be prepared with strategies to collect the appropriate information to make effective decisions.
Project Reports: