Regional Monitoring Networks (RMN) to Detect Changing Baselines in Freshwater Wadeable Streams (Final Report)

Notice

EPA is announcing the release of the final report, Regional Monitoring Networks (RMNs) to Detect Changing Baselines in Freshwater Wadeable Streams in a February 29, 2016 Federal Register Notice.


Abstract

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) is working with its regional offices, states, tribes, and other entities to establish Regional Monitoring Networks (RMNs) at which biological, thermal, and hydrologic data are collected from freshwater wadeable streams to quantify and monitor changes in baseline condition, including climate change effects.

RMNs have a been established in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Southeast, and efforts are underway to expand into other regions. The need for RMNs stems from the lack of long-term, contemporaneous biological, thermal, and hydrologic data, particularly at minimally disturbed sites.

RMN surveys build on existing bioassessment efforts, with the goal of collecting comparable data that can be pooled efficiently at a regional level. Data collected at RMNs can be used to:
  • detect temporal trends;
  • investigate relationships between biological, thermal, and hydrologic data;
  • explore ecosystem responses and recovery from extreme weather events;
  • test hypotheses and predictive models related to climate change; and
  • quantify natural variability.


This final report describes the development of the current RMNs for riffle-dominated, freshwater wadeable streams. It also contains information on selection of candidate sites, expectations for data collection, the rationale for collecting these data, and provides examples of how the RMN data can be used and analyzed.

Citation

U.S. EPA. Regional Monitoring Networks (RMN) to Detect Changing Baselines in Freshwater Wadeable Streams (Final Report) . U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, EPA/600/R-15/280, 2016.

History/Chronology

Sep 2014EPA completed an internal review of the report.
Nov 2014EPA released the external review draft for public comment and external review. [Federal Register Notice: Nov 28, 2014]
Feb 2016EPA released the final report. [Federal Register Notice Feb 29, 2016]

This document has been reviewed in accordance with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency policy and approved for publication. Mention of trade names or commercial products does not constitute endorsement or recommendation for use.