U.S National Vegetation Classification Workshop: Meeting Landfire Needs and Beyond
Date: Nov 7-9, 2017
Location: Anchorage Alaska
US Forest Service
161 E 1st Avenue, Door 8
Anchorage, Alaska 99501
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U.S. National Vegetation Classification Introduction
The U.S. National Vegetation Classification (USNVC) is currently the least complete in Alaska. An Alaska workshop, held in January 2011, initiated drafts of mid-level USNVC types (the division, macrogroup and group), with subsequent revisions by Alaskan ecologists in 2015 2016. But there has been no systematic development of alliances and associations in boreal and arctic Alaska, despite a wide range of published materials on fine-scale plant community types (e.g., Viereck and company, Alaska Natural Heritage Program/Alaska Center for Conservation Science, pers. comm. 2012). Pacific coastal types are better developed, and have been completed in consultation with Alaska, British Columbia, and lower 48 ecologists.
What is now needed is to invite a rigorous peer review of the existing macrogroups and groups, and to establish a peer-review based process for developing alliances and associations, in collaboration with the Ecological Society of America’s NVC Review Board (which is authorized to conduct the review on behalf of the Federal Geographic Data Committee, Vegetation Subcommittee). We have now formally established the NVC Review Board, and would like to engage Alaskan ecologists in improving the USNVC for Alaska. Our workshop will also guide the development of LANDFIRE products. LANDFIRE is preparing to conduct a second round of national mapping, beginning in 2018, using both USNVC Groups and NatureServe Ecological Systems. LANDFIRE will use these classification revisions to improve the Map Legend concepts.