U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Application of the SECAS Gulf-wide Data Suite in Restoration Planning

Case Study of Louisiana’s 2017 Coastal Master Plan

Author(s): Kirk Rhinehart and Mandy Green, with Royal Engineering

The Southeast Conservation Adaptation Strategy (SECAS) was formed in fall 2011 to improve the health, function, and connectivity of southeastern U.S. ecosystems by at least 10 percent by 2060. To assist in the project planning and implementation strategies needed to achieve this ambitious goal, a dynamic data synthesis process was undertaken to produce a conservation prioritization map known as the Southeast Conservation Blueprint (the Southeast Blueprint).

To address a need for regionally consistent restoration planning, a Gulf-wide Data Suite was developed which consists of uniform data inputs and a single analytical approach along the entire northern Gulf of Mexico coast, designed to operate synergistically with SECAS. The datasets within this suite fall under three categories that can be used to investigate co-benefits of conservation and restoration project planning: 1) a prototype conservation priority Blueprint based on natural resource and cultural value; 2) ecosystem stress; and 3) social vulnerability.