Assessment and Analysis of Ecosystem Stressors Across Scales Using Remotely Sensed Imagery Reducing Uncertainty in Managing the Colorado Plateau Ecosystem

EPA Grant Number: R825152
Title: Assessment and Analysis of Ecosystem Stressors Across Scales Using Remotely Sensed Imagery Reducing Uncertainty in Managing the Colorado Plateau Ecosystem
Investigators: Weigel, Stephanie J.
Institution: Colorado State University
Current Institution: Colorado State University , University of Wisconsin Madison
EPA Project Officer: Packard, Benjamin H
Project Period: October 1, 1996 through September 30, 1999
Project Amount: $251,237
RFA: Ecological Assessment (1996) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Ecological Indicators/Assessment/Restoration , Aquatic Ecosystems


The objective of the project is the development of a standardized analytical algorithm for utilizing multi-scale remotely sensed data in the characterization and analysis of landscapes at the ecosystem level. By incorporating scale effects analysis techniques, specifically fractal analysis, multiscale variance, variogram, and local variance analysis, the impacts of environmental stressors will be evaluated across temporal (1970s to 1990s) and spatial (between 60 m and 1 km pixel spatial resolution) scales. Remote sensing and scale effects analysis techniques will be used to indicate the characteristic scales of causal processes and factors affecting spatial patterns on the ecosystem landscape. Knowledge of characteristic scales will provide managers and researcher with guidelines for selecting scales at which to capture or aggregate data, as well as information on the scales of processes and factors that have the potential to threaten ecosystem integrity. By understanding more fully the scales at which specific disturbances and stressors are manifested on and propagated through the landscape, the specific scale ranges within which particular environmental stressors and their effects are manifested in the ecosystem landscape, which will be provided from this project, will allow for the implementation of more effective and appropriately scaled management strategies. Remotely sensed data used in the project are from the North American Landscape Characterization (NALC) project, a cooperative effort between the USEPA, NASA and the USGS. NALC Landsat Multispectral Scanner (MSS) data will be resampled to simulate data resolutions of the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensor, a component of the NASA Mission to Planet Earth's Earth Observing System (EOS).

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this project: View all 4 publications for this project

Supplemental Keywords:

ecosystem, scaling, remote sensing, Colorado Plateau, RFA, Scientific Discipline, Geographic Area, Ecosystem Protection/Environmental Exposure & Risk, Ecology, exploratory research environmental biology, Ecosystem/Assessment/Indicators, Chemical Mixtures - Environmental Exposure & Risk, Ecosystem Protection, State, Ecological Effects - Environmental Exposure & Risk, Ecological Effects - Human Health, Environmental Monitoring, Ecological Risk Assessment, Ecology and Ecosystems, Ecological Indicators, ecological exposure, analytical algorithm, multi-scale biophysical models, remote sensing, scaling, ecosystem assessment, variance analysis, Colorado Plateau ecosystem, environmental stressor, multiple stressors, ecological assessment, ecological impacts, assessment methods, environmental stress, landscape characterization, fractal analysis, Colorado (CO)

Relevant Websites:

The project is included in the Environmental Health Advanced Systems Laboratory (EHASL) Web page at Exit EPA icon. The page is currently under revision, but the link to the project can be found at Exit EPA icon. The PI no longer works at EHASL, so future updates to the project page would occur at another site.

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 1997
  • 1998 Progress Report
  • Final Report