EPA Science Inventory

Advancing the Guánica Bay (Puerto Rico) Watershed Management Plan

Citation:

CARRIGER, J., W. S. FISHER, T. B. STOCKTON, JR., AND P. E. STURM. Advancing the Guánica Bay (Puerto Rico) Watershed Management Plan. Coastal Managment. Taylor and Francis, Philadelphia, PA, (41):19-38, (2013).

Description:

Consideration of stakeholder values in watershed planning and management is a necessity, but sufficiently eliciting, understanding, and organizing those values can be daunting. Many studies have demonstrated the usefulness of formal decision analysis to integrate expert knowledge with stakeholder values. Here, some decision analysis structuring tools were used to advance a proposed watershed management plan toward a broader recognition of values in the watershed and adjacent coastal and marine systems. The U.S. Interagency Coral Reef Task Force selected Gu´anica Bay, Puerto Rico as a site to explore watershed management for protection of coral reefs. A Watershed Management Plan (WMP) for Guánica Bay, Puerto Rico, was introduced in 2008 with the expressed intent of protecting coral reefs from damage related to watershed discharges. A workshop of resource managers, scientists and citizens was convened in 2010 to examine the objectives and activities proposed in the WMP and to conceptually organize the issues in a decision framework useful for identifying trade-offs and information gaps. Here we apply formal decision analysis tools to advance the original plan from the inception of proposed actions to reduce sediment and nutrient stress on coral reefs to a comprehensive watershed management plan with multiple objectives. The process involved selection of a decision context and framing the objectives including selecting an overall objective, identifying fundamental objectives then exploring means to achieve the fundamental objectives. An overall objective to improve the quality of life in the Guánica Bay watershed was selected and fundamental objectives further specified what is meant by improving the quality of life in Guánica Bay. They were: maximizing ecological integrity, maximizing economic benefits, maximizing social well-being, minimizing threats to human health, meeting political and legislative requirements, and maximizing learning opportunities. Sub-objectives and potential measures were included to better define the fundamental objectives, track future progress in restoration tasks, and illustrate trade-offs. Framing the decision context also allows consideration of additional means to achieve the fundamental objectives. Ultimately, this process may be adapted and extended to establish management plans for other Puerto Rico watersheds.

Purpose/Objective:

To present the decision analysis work used by the Coral Reefs Ecosystem Services Research Program for the Guanica Bay Watershed (Puerto Rico)

URLs/Downloads:

Advancing the Guánica Bay (Puerto Rico) Watershed Management Plan   Exit

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Start Date: 01/07/2013
Completion Date: 01/07/2013
Record Last Revised: 03/19/2013
Record Created: 06/23/2011
Record Released: 06/23/2011
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 236277

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS RESEARCH LAB

GULF ECOLOGY DIVISION

BIOLOGICAL EFFECTS AND POPULATION RESPONSE BRANCH