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Rebecca Degagne, GIS Analyst, and Katie O’Connor, Freshwater Specialist, share the process and products of a recent aquatic intactness analysis for the Utah Bureau of Land Management and the Department of Wildlife Resources. Aquatic intactness (i.e. condition) is based on the extent to which human impacts have disrupted the hydrology, water quality, and habitat quality of aquatic systems across the state of Utah and the Colorado Plateau. Aquatic intactness values are high in areas where these impacts are low.

The analysis was performed using a flexible geospatial logic modeling system developed at CBI called Environmental Evaluation Modeling System (EEMS).  When a fuzzy logic model–allowing shades of gray rather than binary values–is combined with a process that integrates knowledge from a highly collaborative core team of expert land managers, the results both reflect reality and are highly relevant for management applications in the future.

December 17, 2015