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Gulf of Maine Council’s EcoSystem Indicator Partnership: transitioning to ecosystem service indicators and a new smartphone app
Latimer, Jim, K. Parlee, AND C. Tilburg. Gulf of Maine Council’s EcoSystem Indicator Partnership: transitioning to ecosystem service indicators and a new smartphone app. Coastal Zone Canada, Toronto, CANADA, June 12 - 17, 2016.
The impact of this work is significant in two ways: it advances the use of indicators to include those relevant to ecosystem services assessments. In addition, it advances citizen science in both the US and Canada
The Gulf of Maine Council’s EcoSystem Indicator Partnership (ESIP) was formed in 2006 to look at change in the health of the Gulf of Maine ecosystem through the use of indicators. ESIP’s initial approach to indicator development focused on seven ecosystem themes, which were based on priority issues identified by scientists, decision-makers and other stakeholders. To date, ESIP has made indicator data available online through its Indicator Reporting Tool and published fact sheets on six of its indicator themes: aquaculture, aquatic habitats, climate change, coastal development, contaminants, and eutrophication. Indicator data and information on ESIP’s final theme – fisheries – will be available in 2016. The ESIP community is now looking to the future and poised to begin the next phase (ESIP 2.0). As part of a bold and innovative new approach, ESIP 2.0 will focus on indicators to track ecosystem services; the benefits that people obtain from the ecosystem. The current state of science on ecosystem services is growing rapidly and ESIP is participating in conversations with other organizations and agencies to determine the best approach to incorporate ecosystem goods and services along with traditional, environmental indicators. Together with ongoing work that relates watershed drivers and environmental impacts, the Gulf of Maine community will help lead the effort towards better incorporation of ecosystem services into discussions about the health of the Gulf of Maine. Alongside this scientific effort ESIP is also growing the community of citizen scientists in the Gulf of Maine region through its new smartphone app: ICUC (“I See You See”). This app allows users to find information on local monitoring activities in the Gulf of Maine. In addition, users can participate in knowledge collection in their local area by uploading smartphone photos at specific locations to an on-line photo library. As the photo library grows, both in number of photos and number of locations, users will be able to observe environmental changes at each location over time via an associated web page on the ESIP website (http://www.gulfofmaine.org/2/esip-homepage/).
Record Details:Record Type: DOCUMENT (PRESENTATION/ABSTRACT)
Organization:U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
NATIONAL HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS RESEARCH LABORATORY
ATLANTIC ECOLOGY DIVISION
WATERSHED DIAGNOSTICS BRANCH