An ecological framework for informing permitting decisions on scientific activities in protected areas


Warning message

Missing Feeds plugin DateiCalFeedsParser. Please contact your site administrator.

There are numerous reasons to conduct scientific research within protected areas, but research activities may also negatively impact organisms and habitats, and thus conflict with a protected area’s conservation goals.

A team of researchers developed a quantitative ecological decision-support framework that estimates these potential impacts so managers can weigh costs and benefits of proposed research projects and make informed permitting decisions. The framework generates quantitative estimates of the ecological impacts of the project and the cumulative impacts of the proposed project and all other projects in the protected area, and then compares the estimated cumulative impacts of all projects with policy-based acceptable impact thresholds.

Although the decision-support framework was designed for and adopted by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife for permitting scientific studies in the state-wide network of marine protected areas (MPAs), the framework can readily be adapted for terrestrial and freshwater protected areas.

Read the full article.