Facilitating adaptive management in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed through the use of online decision support tools

By: , and 



The Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) is attempting to more strategically implement management actions to improve the health of the Nation’s largest estuary. In 2007 the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) CBP office began a joint effort to develop a suite of Internetaccessible decision-support tools and to help meet the needs of CBP partners to improve water quality and habitat conditions in the Chesapeake Bay and its watersheds. An adaptive management framework is being used to provide a structured decision process for information and individual tools needed to implement and assess practices to improve the condition of the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem. The Chesapeake Online Adaptive Support Toolkit (COAST) is a collection of web-based analytical tools and information, organized in an adaptive management framework, intended to aid decisionmakers in protecting and restoring the integrity of the Bay ecosystem. The initial version of COAST is focused on water quality issues. During early and mid- 2008, initial ideas for COAST were shared and discussed with various CBP partners and other potential user groups. At these meetings, test cases were selected to help improve understanding of the types of information and analytical functionality that would be most useful for specific partners’ needs. These discussions added considerable knowledge about the nature of decisionmaking for Federal, State, local and nongovernmental partners. Version 1.0 of COAST, released in early winter of 2008, will be further reviewed to determine improvements needed to address implementation and assessment of water quality practices. Future versions of COAST may address other aspects of ecosystem restoration, including restoration of habitat and living resources and maintaining watershed health.

Additional publication details

Publication type Conference Paper
Publication Subtype Conference Paper
Title Facilitating adaptive management in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed through the use of online decision support tools
Year Published 2009
Language English
Publisher U.S Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) Eastern Geographic Science Center
Description 5 p.
Larger Work Type Report
Larger Work Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Larger Work Title Planning for an uncertain future - Monitoring, integration, and adaptation (SIR 2009-5049)
First page 213
Last page 217
Conference Title Third interagency conference on research in the watersheds
Conference Location Estes Park, CO
Conference Date September 8-11, 2008
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N