EPA's Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program: Availability of Broad-Scale Environmental Data and Opportunities for Use in Environmental Modeling Applicationsby Richard W. Latimer, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Narragansett, United States,
John F. Paul, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Narragansett, United States,
Jeffrey S. Rosen, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Narragansett, United States,
Abstract: The Environmental Monitoring and Assessment and Program (EMAP) has collected a suite of environmental data over a four year period from estuarine systems in the mid-Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico. Data are currently available for secondary users including environmental modelers. The data were collected using a probability-based sampling design which allows unbiased estimates of the status and trends of ecological resources. The parameters collected were chosen as integrative indicators and include both biotic and abiotic condition measures. An information management system has been developed to facilitate the collection, processing, quality assurance, analysis, and distribution of data to a variety of users. The potential usefulness and applicability of EMAP data for modeling studies is presented. EMAP-Estuaries data provide a comparative scale that can be used for placing environmental studies in a regional context. Added benefits include data that are collected and processed in a consistent manner, well documented, can be tracked temporally, and are accessible through a variety of pathways including EPA's Wide Area Network.
Subject Headings: Data processing | Environmental issues | Data collection | Model analysis | Hydrologic data | Probability | Estuaries | Ecosystems | Gulf of Mexico | Mid-Atlantic states
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