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Government Agencies: Papers 1

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(ECP and CTSP grantees, reports, and other sites of interest for conservation geograpy, mapping and GIS. Grantees are coded by program and year of grant at the end of their name/state, i.e. e91 means ECP grant in 1991. c=cstp, cm=ctsp-mac, cs=ctsp-software)

Scholarly papers and ESRI Conference Proceedings

(Legend: ESRI User Conference Papers list the title, then in parentheses "paper" or "abstract" plus the year. Other web-located papers list title, author if known, and excerpt.)

Promoting a Free Access or Minimal Cost of Dissemination Arrangement for Government-Held Geographic Information Systems Data (1995 ESRI Conf. Abstract, Keene Matsunaga, Jack Dangermond) ...This paper focuses on the role that the governments play in providing public access to GIS data at a minimal cost of dissemination. It analyzes the First Amendment and the U.S. Copyright Act's underlying policies as they relate to the providing of public access to GIS data. .

Information Center for the Environment: Public Access to Natural Resource Data (1996 ESRI Conf. Paper, Karen Beardsley and James F. Quinn)...The Information Center for the Environment (ICE) is housed in the Division of Environmental Studies at the University of California, Davis (UCD)...The goals of UCD ICE include providing GIS, database systems, and modelling support to environmental resource projects, and developing easy-to-use public access to a wide variety of environmental information. In support of these goals, UCD ICE staff have developed an interactive mapping query system known as ICE MAPS that allows World-Wide Web users to create and download customized maps.

Your Right to Know in the UK (1997 ERSI Paper, Susan Pipes, Friends of the Earth, 26-26 Underwood Street London, N1 7JQ UNITED KINGDOM, Telephone: 44-171-566-1637 Fax: 44-171-490-0881 E-mail: Defining Issue: Friends of the Earth (FOE) has been using spatial analysis as a campaigning tool for over six years. However, in order to maintain the integrity of our GIS research we need to have better access to the United Kingdom government's environmental information. Unlike in the United States there is no Freedom of Information Act in the U.K. at present, and it is the aim of this paper to chart the progress made by FOE and others in obtaining better access to environmental information in the U.K. - our legal challenges, our winning campaigns and our present battles. One Solution: The paper will give a live Internet demonstration of the clear example, FOE has set for the U.K. government in the provision of real access to environmental information. FOE has published the government's own Chemical Release Inventory , a complex database of chemical emissions recorded at U.K. factories, on the Internet via a mapping interface. By entering their post code (or ZIP Code) the user generates a map centered on their own home that identifies local factories. These can then be clicked on to discover emission levels from each individual factory. Voted the Best Non-Commerical Site by GIS World, FOE's version of the Chemical Release Inventory has revolutionized access to this information. In 1994/95 the U.K. government recorded 760 requests for this information. In 1995/96 FOE responded to 25,000 requests for the same information.

Applying GAP Analysis Data to Land Use Planning and Development of a Bioinformation Node . (1997 ESRI Paper: Thomas Kohley Wyoming Water Resources Center PO Box 3067 University Station Laramie, WY 82071 Telephone: 307-766-2734 Fax: 307-766-3785 E-mail: Defining Issue: Ecoregional data sets and analyses can inform local government land use planning, but the data must be easily accessible and usable. Ultimate biodiversity must be conserved at the site scale; thus, this project provides "biological extension" services to data users and provides examples of how to apply the data. GIS Solution: Development of an interactive CD ROM and an Internet "bioinformation node" provide access to Statewide biological data for desktop platforms. ArcView tools are developed to provide a simple interface for biodiversity decision making on a daily basis. Methodology: GAP data combined with other base coverages and other biological databases are served over the Internet as a bioinformation node. The data is also published on CD ROM. The extension "agent" uses a laptop-based ArcView demonstration to train users in application of the data to their decision making process. Additionally, an ArcView-based decision support system is developed for local government planners to integrate biodiversity concerns in planning and review processes. Software: This project is conducted with ESRI ArcInfo and ArcView. The purpose is to present models for bioinformation nodes for other states and regions, decision support systems for local government planning, and extension services for biological information and applications.

ArcInfo Applications in the Antarctic Program of the National Science Foundation (1996 ESRI Conf. Abstract, Cheryl A. Hallam)...The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has been active in Antarctic mapping and research for more than thirty years. Work has included geologic and hydrologic research, as well as topographic and satellite image mapping. During the last decade, mapping activities have expanded to include the production of digital cartographic data....

Computerization of the Biological Survey Locality File and geographical coding of the Vertebrate Collections in the National Museum, Roy W. McDiarmid, BRD Patuxent Wildlife Research Center: 12100 Beech Forest Road, Suite 4039, Laurel, Maryland 20708-4039 USA, Telephone: 301-497-5500 Fax: 301-497-5505) . "Starting in 1885 the Biological Survey collected specimens of vertebrates to inventory and document the natural resources of North America. More than 800,000 specimens resulted (curated by NBS museum personnel) were and continue to be the basis for hundreds of scientific papers on vertebrate systematics and ecology and a tremendous source of distributional and temporal data about the North American fauna. While most specimen records are available electronically, only a few include latitude and longitude; therefore, this resource is only marginally useful for GIS and other mapping applications....We proposed to build an electronic copy of the Biological Survey locality file, enhance each record with coordinate data from the Geographic Names Information System (the U.S. Geological Survey's Board of Geographic Names digital gazetteer) and establish a protocol to associate geocoordinates with specimen records in the National Museum. Completion of the project will make thousands of records of National Museum specimens available for use in GIS and similar projects by the NBS and other partner organizations." .

CONSERVATION GAP: Applying GAP Analysis to Small Area Management: Two Projects from Idaho . (1997 ESRI Paper: Nancy Wright University of Idaho Fish & Wildlife Cooperative Research Unit Univeristy of Idaho/College of Forestry Moscow, ID 83843, Telephone: 208-885-5788 Fax: 208-885-9080 E-mail: , Jason Karl, Troy Merrill ) . Defining Issue: The use of GAP Analysis to assess biodiversity at the regional level has gained wide acceptance, but most management and planning is conducted locally for small areas. Inappropriate use of regional GAP models at the local level may result in erroneous estimations of biodiversity. New approaches are needed to apply GAP to local level analysis. GIS Solution: Landscape Dynamics Lab uses ARCGRID modeling with vector overlays to demonstrate how data at various scales and resolutions can be combined to address local planning needs. Accuracy is demonstrated using two data sets from Idaho. Methodology: Two separate applications of GAP data conducted for the State of Idaho and local agencies are included in this presentation. Both projects were completed on ArcInfo Version 7.0.4 on Sun SPARC UNIX workstations. The Latah County Planning and Zoning Commission requested maps of the County's critical habitat including wetland and riparian zones, approximate tree size within forested land, and an estimation of species richness across the County. The critical habitat information would be referenced in their zoning decisions. A rasterized vegetation basemap at 30 m MMU was reclassified into primary shrub, grass, and forest habitats. Riparian and wetland zones were identified from vector stream and soil overlays. Species richness was derived from the combined presence of vertebrate species within the primary habitats. The final product provided a spatial foundation for land use planning that considered the criticalness of biodiversity within the County. Craig Mountain Wildlife Mitigation Area, within the Idaho Department of Fish and Game, requested wildlife/habitat relationship models for their estimated 200 terrestrial vertebrate species. Predicted species distribution maps would be used to monitor habitat while implementing land management objectives and providing recreation facilities within the 100,000 acre WMA. A rasterized vegetation basemap at 30 m MMU was overlaid with stream data from 7.5 min. USGS digital quads. Adaptations of the GAP wildlife/habitat relationship models were run in ARCGRID. Accuracy assessment included expert review and field survey data for breeding birds and woodpeckers. The final product included a hardcopy atlas and an interactive CD-ROM for use in ArcView. Software: These applications were written in ARC Macro Language to run on ARCGRID. The applications demonstrate methods of combining polygon coverages with rasterized basemaps to achieve spatial accuracy in small area applications of GAP.

Implementation of the Pacific Northwest Forest Plan: An Example of Interorganizational GIS Coordination (1995 ESRI Conf. Abstract, Duane R. Dippon) All of the Federal agencies responsible for, or involved with, implementation of the Northwest (President's) Forest Plan signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in February 1994, which stated as a common vision " establish a seamless current, consistent and accessible information network to support ecosystem management".

Interactive CD Product for the National Biological Survey Gap Analysis Program (1995 ESRI Conf. Paper, Douglas Wight, Allan Falconer, Collin Homer, Scott Basset, R. Douglas Ramsey, Thomas C. Edwards) ...Gap analysis is a US Department of Interior, National Biological Service program to define and map the diversity of terestrial animal species. As the process of the Utah Gap Analysis proceeded, the need for a well managed, accessible database available to the user community was obvious.

Interagency Cooperation in Information Management: Why, Why Not, and some ideas on How*, Jeff Waldon, Project Leader Fish and Wildlife Information Exchange . "Without the information to make good decisions, rational management of natural resources is not possible. Acquiring, managing, and distributing appropriate information for biodiversity and land management issues is an expensive and time-consuming job. Although the research capability in the United States is producing more information than ever, presumably for managers, our ability to synthesize and apply that information has only recently advanced to a stage where reasonably useful systems are available to access the information in a useful timeframe. "

Ecosystem Characterization and Assessment in the Interior Columbia River Basin (1995 ESRI Conf. Paper, John Steffenson) ...The final goal of this project was to identify high-value natural resources so local, state, and federal agencies can develop a resource protection management plan based on information provided by this analysis. Criteria used in this analysis included unfragmented natural land, undeveloped lake shorelines and river banks, high-value wetlands, rare and endangered species habitat, old growth forest, and other wildlife habitats. USGS 1:24,000 road coverages, land use data derived from Landsat TM images, and census data were used to derive fragmentation information. Ranking criteria for unfragmented natural land included size, habitat type, and population density.


All text by the respective organizations, January 2, 1997

Compilation & web design: Charles Convis, ESRI Conservation Program, April 2, 1996


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