What they said:

The Science Expert Committee (SEC) emphasized that from a study design perspective, it is critical to survey sites that are hard to access, and stressed the importance of sampling the complete ABMI grid for representation of biodiversity.

The SEC urged the ABMI to think carefully about how climate change is being incorporated into its mandate and emphasized their recommendation that climate change be part of the ABMI mission.

The SEC felt that the ABMI needs to be more granular when analyzing and reporting on non-native species.

The SEC heard that the ABMI’s intactness calculation uses a backfilled method that does not take into account natural variability. It suggested that this limitation be acknowledged more overtly. However, since the ABMI is focused on evaluating the effect of human footprint on biodiversity, the Committee concluded that backfilling is a reasonable way to assess these effects, and that intactness remains a powerful tool.

The SEC was adamant that ABMI sites remain confidential and emphasized that site confidentiality is the only solution that makes sense for the ABMI as it:

  • protects the integrity of sites from meddling;
  • enlarges the pool of sampling sites by enabling agreements with landowners; and
  • protects legal agreements that have already been made.

The SEC emphasized the importance of developing hierarchies/methods/agreements for people to access site locations when they have demonstrated a need for that information and are willing to not compromise the data in any way. It felt that the present ABMI mechanism for this is reasonable.

The SEC was very supportive of the ABMI’s decision to include an evaluation of its success in working with a diverse set of stakeholders. Each of the Committee members spoke to the interdependencies between the Review’s evaluation of science and stakeholder engagement.

Have Questions or Feedback?

The ABMI’s 10-year Science and Program Review was built around listening to our partners and stakeholders. We welcome questions, comments, or suggestions about the review process or output.

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