CBI is working with the Sequoia Regional partnership on developing models to prioritize forest management actions to protect Sequoia groves from the threats of wildfires and climate change.
The need to plan strategic, effective forest management is urgent in the Southern Sierra Nevada, where forests have been ravaged by drought, fire, and catastrophic tree mortality. Multiple, sometimes conflicting, management objectives must be balanced, and multiple agencies need help coordinating their forest restoration actions. To date, many management decisions have been based on expert opinion or narrowly focused models that don’t reflect the rapidly evolving science of forest resilience. There are currently no decision-support systems that integrate the available information into a transparent, multi-objective decision-making framework. A system for strategically planning forest restoration treatments to achieve multiple management objectives based on a common and scientific understanding of conditions on the landscape is needed.
The Sequoia Regional Partnership, a group composed of cooperating agencies — Sierra Nevada Conservancy, Sequoia National Forest, Sequoia National Parks, Sequoia Parks Conservancy, Save the Redwoods League, and others, is working with Conservation Biology Institute (CBI) to co-produce the needed multi-objective management action prioritization models, and create a toolkit for exploring and evaluating outcomes of management actions for a range of resource management goals. These goals include the protection of sequoia groves, overall forest health, wildfire protection, and endangered species habitat management. The project is supported by CBI’s data sharing and mapping platform Data Basin. The first phase of the project is funded by the Save the Redwood League and Sequoia National Park through its partner the Sequoia Parks Conservancy.
Together the group is tackling the hard work of prioritizing the use of limited resources and coordinating efforts to save the beloved trees, and, ultimately, work toward a future in which the forest ecosystems of the Sierra Nevada are thriving once again.