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ARS Home » Plains Area » Las Cruces, New Mexico » Range Management Research » Research » Research Project #432138

Research Project: Implementation and Expansion of the BLM’s Assessment, Inventory, and Monitoring Strategy to Support Multiple Resource Management Decision Making

Location: Range Management Research

Project Number: 3050-11210-009-97-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Apr 1, 2017
End Date: Mar 31, 2022

Objective:
The objectives of this project are to support the continued implementation and development of the BLM’s AIM Strategy through: 1. Supporting field implementation of AIM monitoring projects – This objective includes coordinating with BLM on the design and implementation of AIM monitoring programs, supporting field data collection through continued development and support of desktop and mobile monitoring databases, and supporting BLM staff in the analysis of AIM monitoring project data and reporting. 2. Developing and supporting consistent monitoring protocols – This objective includes documentation of the core monitoring methods via the Monitoring Manual for Shrubland, Grassland, and Savannah Ecosystems; supporting BLM’s implementation of remote sensing technologies to support field-based monitoring and for monitoring at larger scales; coordinating with the AIM program to increase consistency of monitoring protocols across BLM programs; and working jointly with BLM to promote consistency in monitoring across US land management agencies. 3. Training BLM staff and partners in monitoring protocols and project implementation – This objective includes the development of training programs and materials for a) correctly applying AIM core field protocols to collect high-quality monitoring data and b) design and implementation of AIM monitoring projects; and conducting AIM trainings jointly with AIM program staff. 4. Developing and implementing workflows and tools for monitoring data analysis and reporting – This objective includes coordinating with BLM on the development of approaches and tools for analyzing and reporting on monitoring data for multiple objectives to support management decision making within BLM. 5. Integrating emerging science on land health monitoring at multiple scales into BLM decision making – This objective includes conducting research into: novel approaches for monitoring land health, analytical techniques for land health monitoring at multiple scales, compatibility and combination of monitoring techniques, and approaches for using monitoring data to support BLM decision making.

Approach:
1. Supporting field implementation of AIM by: a) Supporting monitoring project design and implementation for AIM-related projects as needed; b) Continuing to develop monitoring data collection and storage tools and databases including the Database for Inventory, Monitoring, and Assessment (DIMA); c) coordinating with BLM on the development, support, and implementation of tools for designing monitoring projects and tracking their implementation; and d) maintaining the LandscapeToolbox.org family of websites. 2. Developing and supporting consistent monitoring protocols by: a) coordinating and promoting adoption of consistent, core monitoring protocols within BLM and across US land management agencies and other organizations; b) finalizing second edition of the Monitoring Manual for Grassland, Shrubland, and Savannah Ecosystems which documents the AIM terrestrial core methods; c) continuing work in evaluating different methods for collecting AIM core and supplemental indicators and improve the documentation and implementation of these methods; d) developing and implementing tools for quantifying and improving quality of AIM core field data; and e) support the implementation of remote sensing in AIM monitoring through research and coordinating with BLM to develop a remote sensing strategy for AIM. 3. Training BLM staff and partners in monitoring protocols and project implementation by: a) continuing to coordinate with the BLM to develop training materials (e.g., websites, manuals, videos) for field trainings in the BLM Core indicators and methods and workshops on AIM project design and implementation; and b) cooperating with the BLM to provide trainings for BLM and partner personnel that will be collecting AIM data and BLM personnel responsible for developing and supporting AIM monitoring projects. 4. Developing and implementing workflows and tools for monitoring data analysis and reporting by: a) Coordinating with the BLM on development of workflows and tools for automated and semi-automated data summary, analysis and reporting; b.) Developing standard reporting products for AIM monitoring projects. c) Coordinating with the BLM to develop workflows and produce indicator summaries for Greater Sage-grouse habitat assessments. 5. Integrating emerging science on land health monitoring at multiple scales into BLM decision making by conducting and publishing research to address data/knowledge gaps for implementing the AIM Strategy. 6. Communication and coordination through: a) Jornada personnel will continue to provide consultation to BLM AIM program staff and leadership on a regular basis through scheduled conference calls, individual email and phone conversations, service on AIM teams, document reviews, and on-site meetings; and b) Jornada project staff will hold at least one coordination and priority-setting meeting with BLM AIM program staff annually.