The Forest Inventory Analysis (FIA) program is the US Forest Service's national program for collecting and reporting information on status and trends in forested ecosystems across all land ownerships - public and private. Managed through Forest Service Research and Development, the FIA program collects data and information on forests status and trends in area, location, growth, mortality, harvesting, composition, and structure. The FIA program operates at a strategic scale with one field sample location approximately every 6,000 acres. FIA data are statistically useful from the National scale down to areas of about 200,000 acres.
Some in the National Forest System (NFS) use FIA-generated data in Land Management Planning and Plan revisions, landscape or watershed assessments, and cumulative effects analysis for project level work. Interpreting and compiling the raw FIA data takes skill and knowledge of statistics, how data can be used as indicators for natural resource conditions, and current land management issues. Regions 1, 5, and 6 have developed compilation programs that are being used by their Forests and Districts in their analyses.
The objective of this proposal is to collect, assess, and evaluate the existing FIA data compilation programs being used by NFS Regions and develop a recommendation of a possible nation-wide standard compilation program. The evaluation would also identifying gaps and needed tools.
The Assessment and Evaluation Report was proposed to:
- document the collaboration of the project team which consist of Regional Inventory Representatives from R1, R5, R6 and representatives from IMI and FIA. (Note: an attempt will be made to get input from other Regions, as well).
- provide a brief description of the FIA program and FIA-generated data
- describe how Regions 1, 5, and 6 use FIA-generated data
- compare and evaluate the toolboxes used by R1, 5, and 6
- provide recommendations for further actions
Status: This assessment was discontinued by the I&M Steering Committee in FY 2007.