April 7, 2015
U.S. Geological Survey Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Roadmap 2014
By Jill Cress, Mike Hutt, Jeff Sloan, Mark Bauer, Mark Feller, and Susan Goplen. USGS Open-File Report 2015-1032.
The National Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Project Office, located in Denver as part of the Geosciences and Environmental Change Science Center, has been a key player in performing research on and operational studies of this emerging data-collection technology. UAS have been found to be more cost-effective, safer, and better platforms for studying climate and landscape changes, conducting wildlife inventories, and supporting land management missions than traditional methods. This report provides an overview of the technology, procedures, and lessons learned from missions conducted by U.S. Department of the Interior agencies and describes strategic actions that the Department could take in order to fully utilize this technology going forward.
April 2, 2015
Linking social values and ecosystem services: Social-ecological hotspots for public lands management
By Ken Bagstad (GECSC), James Reed, Darius Semmens (GECSC), Ben Sherrouse (GECSC), and Austin Troy. Published in Regional Environmental Change.
In this paper, hot and cold spots for perceived and modeled ecosystem services were mapped by synthesizing results from a social-values mapping study of residents living near the Pike-San Isabel National Forest, located in the Southern Rocky Mountains, with corresponding biophysically modeled ecosystem services. The goal was to determine whether publicly valued locations for aesthetic, biodiversity, and life-sustaining values relate meaningfully to results from corresponding biophysical ecosystem service models. The study found weak relationships between perceived and biophysically modeled services, indicating that public perception of ecosystem service provisioning regions is limited. Biophysical and cultural ecosystem services hotspot maps for ecosystem services may provide more useful information for forest planning when combined than alone.
April 1, 2015
Long-term controls on soil organic carbon with depth and time: A case study from the Cowlitz River Chronosequence, WA USA
By Corey Lawrence (GECSC), Jennifer Harden, Xiaomei Xu, Marjorie Schulz, and Susan Trumbore. Published in Geoderma.
In this study, an extensive dataset of soil profile chemistry and mineralogy is compiled from a soil chronosequence formed along the Cowlitz River, Washington, with soils ranging in age from 250 to 1200,000 years and spanning a developmental gradient encompassing clear changes in soil mineralogy, chemistry, and surface area. Comparison of these and other metrics of soil development with soil organic carbon properties reveal several relationships that may be diagnostic of the long-term coupling of soil development and carbon cycling. The results of the study advance a framework for linking temporal (e.g., millennial scale) changes in soil development with the storage and stability of soil organic carbon, including depth-dependent evolution of soil mineral profiles and stabilization of soil organic carbon through organic-mineral and organic-metal associations.