BENTHIC COMMUNITY STRUCTURE CHARACTERIZATION AND ASSESSMENT OF TURBIDITY IMPACTS OF THE NORTH (MANATÍ AND VEGA BAJA) AND SOUTH (GUÁNICA) COASTS, PUERTO RICO
Our goals are to integrate new and previously collected in situ data with high resolution remotely-sensed imagery to produce up-to-date detailed maps of the shallow-water benthic communities associated with the Manatí, Vega Baja and Guánica coastlines, and to analyze suspended and benthic sediments at these communities and how these sediments relate to the runoff of major riverine systems associated with these coastlines. Some of the outcomes include:
1) A benthic characterization of the reefs located along the Manatí-Vega Baja and Guánica coastlines.
2) Detailed maps of the marine benthic communities supported by high spatial resolution satellite and drone imagery.
3) Assess the composition of suspended and benthic sediments on critical habitats like coral reef and seagrass.
4) Integrate the data already available from previous studies conducted on these areas.
5) Conduct educational meetings with the stakeholders of these study sites.
-DEVELOPMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL SENSITIVITY INDEX (ESI) MAPS FOR VARIOUS ISLAND NATIONS
Project goals included the development of an Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) Map to identify the important natural and human use resources and vulnerability of those resources to oil spills or contamination. The major responsibilities of this project included working as a lead consultant and GIS manager for the International Maritime Organization (IMO) through the Regional Activity Center/Regional Marine Pollution Emergency, Information and Training Center for the Wider Caribbean (RAC/REMPEITC-Carib). Additional tasks included GIS geodatabase development from: data mining from government agencies, NGO’s, private sector and academia; imagery analysis and aerial photographic survey; field data collection for shoreline classification, and data collection through human use mapping activities. As a final product an ESI map booklet was developed and distributed to first responders, as well as the collected GIS geodatabase and mapping products. This project provided a new baseline of GIS information for local governments oil spill preparedness and disaster management.
-PUERTO RICO SEAGRASS INITIAL ASSESSMENT (GIS Component) (see the Web Mapping Application)
The project consisted in identifying seagrass protection and restoration areas based on observed anthropogenic impacts to seagrass and recommendations of priority conservation locations and strategies in southern Puerto Rico. Responsibilities as a GIS consultant included the integration of field, aerial photography and water quality measurements for the assessment of anthropogenic impacts and stressors. Identification of sites for field data collection and surveys were developed based on integration previous benthic maps, DEM, and other data sources. Additional tasks involved the construction of a GIS geodatabase with information from: digitization and classification of coastal impacts areas, integration of field data, and development of a vulnerability index for seagrasses based on various parameters. Final GIS data and Vulnerability Index were compiled in a Web Mapping Application.
-THE NATURE CONSERVANCY (TNC) DEVELOPMENT OF A GIS DATABASE FOR COASTAL AND MARINE SPATIAL PLANNING.
-US FISH & WILDLIFE CABO ROJO NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE MAPS FOR EXHIBITS AND OUTREACH
-CABO ROJO AND LAGUNA CARTAGENA NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGES COMPREHENSIVE CONSERVATION PLANNING (CCP) MAPS
-REFUGE LANDS GIS (RLGIS) GEODATABASE DEVELOPMENT FOR CABO ROJO AND LAGUNA CARTAGENA NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGES
-US FISH & WILDLIFE CARIBBEAN ECOLOGICAL SERVICES SPECIES GEOLOCATION AND DIGITIZING GEODATABASE
-US FISH & WILDLIFE VIEQUES NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE MAPS VISITOR SERVICE MANAGEMENT PLAN
Satellite imagery (left) and new benthic habitat map (right) for Cayo Coral, Guanica.
St. Lucia Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) Mapping
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Puerto Rico Seagrass Fund Initial Assessment (GIS)
Environmental Mapping Consultants