NetMap: A Tool Supporting Watershed Science and Resource Management
Digital data and geographical information system (GIS) software have increasing value to people planning and managing natural resources for multiple purposes and at scales that reveal ecological processes. Yet technological advances in computer-based analyses cannot be put to the fullest use if they are not widely available, user-friendly, or offer consistent coverage over large landscapes.
NetMap is a community-based watershed science system comprising a digital watershed database for the Pacific Northwest, analysis tools, and user forums. The state-of-the-art, desktop tool contains about 70 functions and 80 parameters that address watershed attributes and processes such as fluvial geomorphology, fish habitat, erosion, watershed disturbance, road networks, wildfire, hydrology, large woody debris, and change by land use. NetMap integrates with ESRI ArcMap� 9.2/9.3, a commonly used mapping program, and with nonproprietary GIS software. The community aspect of NetMap allows users to build and upload analysis models and decision-support systems to the 'tool library' and access a standardized database of stream and terrain maps.NetMap allows customized watershed analyses to be done at a fraction of the cost of current methods.
The Willamette National Forest is using NetMap to prioritize road restoration and removal projects, and the Oregon Department of Forestry is using it to plan timber management.