USDA Forest Service Resource Information Group

Existing Vegetation Classification, Mapping, and Inventory Technical Guide Update

Protocol Description

The Existing Vegetation Classification and Mapping Technical Guide, was published in 2005. Since then, the Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) has adopted vegetation classification standards that are not reflected in the current Technical Guide. Consistent procedures for compliance with FGDC standards are essential to facilitate landscape-scale coordination across administrative units and with our conservation partners.

In 2007, agency vegetation classification, mapping, and inventory specialists met to discuss business needs that had changed and identify opportunities to improve the guidance in the Technical Guide. Workshop participants identified and recommended a series of action items for improvements to the guide. Those action items are the basis for a project proposal recently approved by the Information Resources Board (IRB).

Accurate and consistent information on existing vegetation is essential to a wide variety of agency programs. This effort includes the following deliverables:

Phase 1: Identify and make revisions that (1) ensure alignment with current FGDC standards, (2) remove policy statements more appropriately addressed in the Forest Service directives system, and (3) remove information that is not relevant to the use and application of the Technical Guide (e.g., history of Forest Service efforts to improve resource information management). This work has been completed and is available: Existing Vegetation Classification and Mapping Technical Guide Version 1.1 (PDF 9.2 MB).

Phase 2: Evaluate recommendations from the 2007 workshop and consult with the Steering Team to establish priorities for updates to the Technical Guide. Develop technical guidance needed to address priority recommendations, provide an opportunity for field and staff review, and draft an updated Technical Guide. This work would be completed prior to the CY2012 field season.

Directives Revision: Identify and draft appropriate supplements or revisions to FS directives, specifically FSM 1940 and FSH 1909.14. This work will be completed prior to the CY2012 field season.

Project Charter and Organization

Briefing Papers

Scope of Work

Business Requirements Analysis

Working Groups

Phase 1

  • Classification Edits Working Group (David Tart, Ralph Warbington)
  • Policy Review and Text/Table Revisions (Ralph Warbington, Kellen Nelson, Andy Lister)
  • Life Form/Order Revision for Mapping (Kevin Megown, Mark Riley, Carlos Ramirez, Andy Lister, David Tart)
  • Technical Guide Edits – Existing Vegetation Mapping (Dave Tart, Wendy Goetz, Ralph Warbingon)

Phase 2

  • Working Group A: Existing Vegetation Inventory Integration Working Group (Team Leader: Carlos Ramirez)
  • Working Group B: Map Accuracy/Utility Working Group (Team Leader: Kevin Megown )
  • Working Group C: Map Unit and Feature Design Working Group (Team Leader: Andy Lister )
  • Working Group D: Map Maintenance Working Group (Team Leader: Wendy Goetz)
  • Working Group E: Business Needs Validation Working Group (Team Leader: Linda Spencer)
  • Working Group F: Non-Forest Information Gaps

Project Management

Project Management Schedule

Implementation Management Team

Steering Team Records

Core Team Records

USDA Forest Service
Ecosystem Management Coordination (EMC)
1400 Independence Ave.
Mailstop: 1104
Washington, DC 20250-1104

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Last modified: Monday, 10-Feb-2014 15:08:59 CST