The SWCC Monitoring Committee, led by the University of Montana, will provide oversight and coordination of monitoring activities to ensure quality, inclusive participation, and transparent data access for anyone interested. One way we’ll do this is by getting citizens, students and researchers out on the ground to collect meaningful data before, during and after projects. Another way is by holding periodic gatherings of residents throughout the project area to hear ideas and input as work gets done on the ground. Our results will be permanently stored on this web site so our partners, neighbors and anyone else interested can see what we’ve learned. The goal is to find the right way to put limited resources on the ground to restore fisheries and clean water, encourage the health of native plant and wildlife communities, improve recreational opportunities, protect forested communities and employ local contractors to get the job done.
The CFLR program and SWCC offer an opportunity to chart a new course in the relationship between community, economy and forest health. This unprecedented monitoring effort allows the communities, agencies and partners to examine and refine the approach based on facts gathered on the ground.
Members of the SWCC Monitoring Committee are committed to measure the following indicators:
Fire and Fuel Dynamics – changes in fuel distributions and potential fire severity and capacity for fire suppression staff to manage wildfires efficiently and safely.
Biodiversity – plant (nonnative, invasive species), terrestrial animal (land bird), and aquatic animal (fish) indicators.
Soil and Water – soil movement, water quality and stream flows, and soil productivity.
Economic effects – contribution of treatments toward job creation and maintenance, impacts of best value contracting, available biomass for energy production, labor income received in communities in the SW Crown landscape, and enhanced non-market values.
Social implications – attitudes toward aesthetics, appropriateness of forest uses, and level of trust and commitment to public land management operations.