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Gulf Coast Vulnerability Assessment


Publication Date
2015-11-01 00:00:00
publication date


LCC Network Data Steward(Point of Contact), Amanda Watson(Originator), Joshua S. Reece(Originator), Cynthia Edwards(Originator), Laura Geselbracht(Originator), Mark Woodrey(Originator), Megan K. La Peyre(Originator), P. Soupy Dalyander(Originator), Gulf Coast Prairie Landscape Conservation Cooperative(Point of Contact), Amanda Watson(Principal Investigator), Blair E Tirpak(Originator), 2015-11-01(Publication), Gulf Coast Vulnerability Assessment,


The Gulf Coast Vulnerability Assessment (GCVA) used an expert opinion approach to qualitatively assess the vulnerability of four ecosystems: mangrove, oyster reef, tidal emergent marsh, and barrier islands, and a suite of wildlife species that depend on them. More than 50 individuals participated in the completion of the GCVA, facilitated via Ecosystem and Species Expert Teams. The GCVA made use of the Standardized Index of Vulnerability and Value Assessment (SIVVA) (Reece and Noss 2014) to provide an objective framework for evaluating vulnerability by guiding assessors through a series of questions related to the changes an ecosystem or species might experience due to climate change and other threats. Assessors used their best professional [...]


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Climate, sea level rise, and urbanization are undergoing unprecedented levels of combined change and are expected to have large effects on natural resources—particularly along the U.S. portion of the Gulf of Mexico. Management decisions to address these effects (i.e., adaptation) require an understanding of the relative vulnerability of various resources to these stressors. To meet this need, the four Landscape Conservation Cooperatives along the Gulf partnered with the Gulf of Mexico Alliance to conduct this Gulf Coast Vulnerability Assessment (GCVA). Vulnerability in this context incorporates the aspects of exposure and sensitivity to threats, coupled with the adaptive capacity to mitigate those threats. Potential impact and adaptive capacity reflect natural history features of target species and ecosystems. This dataset is designed to inform land managers, researchers, and decision makers about the relative vulnerability across individual species and ecosystems and how that vulnerability varies spatially across the Gulf region for each. One anticipated application of this information is in project and proposal review, as a means to identify vulnerable resources that may require a greater level of scrutiny to ensure sustainability. Similarly, using this information to broadly evaluate where increased conservation effort should be directed to reduce vulnerabilities (i.e. adaptation) is another intended use of these results. From a research perspective, high variability in assessors’ individual scores for specific aspects of the assessment help identify where uncertainties exist that should be the target of further investigation. The authors caution that these results should not be applied at scales below the subregion without careful consideration.


None. Please see 'Distribution Info' for details.; Acknowledgement of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Wetland and Aquatic Research Center (WARC) as a data source would be appreciated in products developed from these data. Such acknowledgement as is standard for citation and legal practices for data sources is expected by users of these data. Sharing new data layers developed directly from the data would be appreciated by the WARC staff. Users should be aware that comparison with other datasets for the same area from other time periods may be inaccurate because of inconsistencies resulting from changes in mapping conventions, data collection procedures, and computer processes over time. These data have been approved for release by the USGS. Although these data have been subjected to rigorous review and are substantially complete, the USGS reserves the right to revise the data pursuant to further analysis and review. Furthermore, these data are released on condition that neither the USGS nor the U.S. Government shall be held liable for any damages resulting from its authorized or unauthorized use.; Distributor assumes no liability for misuse of data.

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