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Ecosystem Services

We model the fate of carbon sequestration, wildlife habitat, and habitat connectivity.

Ecosystem Services

We model the fate of carbon sequestration, wildlife habitat, and habitat connectivity.

Carbon Sequestration

ApexRMS forecasts the effects of land use and land cover (LULC) change on ecosystem carbon. Working principally with the U.S. Geological Survey’s LandCarbon project, we have developed a unique suite of software tools that project the effects of LULC change on carbon dynamics across varying geographic scales. The Land Use and Carbon Scenario Simulator (LUCAS), for example, is a public-domain tool used by the U.S. Geological Survey to assess the carbon implications of LULC change across all land cover types in the U.S., including forests, wetlands, shrublands, and grasslands.

carbon-sequestration 2

Total carbon projections across different stocks for a given scenario modeled using the SyncroSim package, LUCAS.

Selected Clients:

United States Geological Survey
National Resources Conservation Service (U.S. Dept. of Agriculture)
National Park Foundation

Wildlife Habitat

We use ST-Sim, an open-source package within the SyncroSim modeling framework, to project changes in wildlife habitat. ST-Sim allows users to develop stochastic, spatially-explicit models of landscape change for any vegetation community (Daniel, Frid, Sleeter, and Fortin, 2016). This output can then be used to generate corresponding spatial projections for habitat of various species, including estimates of uncertainty. For example, ApexRMS has used this approach to explore questions regarding the effects of timber harvest, wildfire, and climate change on woodland caribou habitat in the boreal forest (Daniel, 2017) and migratory bird habitat in north eastern British Columbia (Norris, Frid, Debyser, De Groot et al., 2021).

wildlife-habitat 3

Projected estimates of habitat suitability across management scenarios modeled by the SyncroSim package, ST-Sim.

Selected Clients: 

USGS North Central Climate Adaptation Science Center
Fort McMurray Métis
Ontario Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry
Fort McKay Métis
Alberta Environment and Parks

Habitat Connectivity

We use a variety of methods for identifying key habitat patches and corridors vital to maintaining habitat connectivity across multiple scales for different species (Rayfield, Pelletier, Dumitru, Cardille et al., 2016). By coupling these methods with our open-source ST-Connect package for SyncroSim, we forecast how a landscape’s habitat connectivity may be affected by varying land management and climate change scenarios. For example ApexRMS has applied this approach locally to prioritize future conservation efforts in Southern Ontario, and around the city of Montreal, Canada (Albert, Rayfield, Dumitru, and Gonzalez, 2017).

HabitatConnectivityMontreal2

Patches of species' suitable habitat ranked on a scale of low to high priority for future habitat connectivity modeled using the SyncroSim package, ST-Connect.

Selected Clients: 

McGill University
Royal Botanical Gardens
Ministère de l'Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques

Carbon Sequestration

ApexRMS forecasts the effects of land use and land cover (LULC) change on ecosystem carbon. Working principally with the U.S. Geological Survey’s LandCarbon project, we have developed a unique suite of software tools that project the effects of LULC change on carbon dynamics across varying geographic scales. The Land Use and Carbon Scenario Simulator (LUCAS), for example, is a public-domain tool used by the U.S. Geological Survey to assess the carbon implications of LULC change across all land cover types in the U.S., including forests, wetlands, shrublands, and grasslands.

carbon-sequestration 2

Total carbon projections across different stocks for a given scenario modeled using the SyncroSim package, LUCAS.

Selected Clients:

Ecosystem services - Carbon sequestration

Selected Clients:

Ecosystem services - Carbon sequestration

Wildlife Habitat

We use ST-Sim, an open-source package within the SyncroSim modeling framework, to project changes in wildlife habitat. ST-Sim allows users to develop stochastic, spatially-explicit models of landscape change for any vegetation community (Daniel, Frid, Sleeter, and Fortin, 2016). This output can then be used to generate corresponding spatial projections for habitat of various species, including estimates of uncertainty. For example, ApexRMS has used this approach to explore questions regarding the effects of timber harvest, wildfire, and climate change on woodland caribou habitat in the boreal forest (Daniel, 2017) and migratory bird habitat in north eastern British Columbia (Norris, Frid, Debyser, De Groot et al., 2021).

wildlife-habitat 3

Projected estimates of habitat suitability across management scenarios modeled by the SyncroSim package, ST-Sim.

Selected Clients: 

Ecosystem services - Wildlife Habitat

Selected Clients: 

Ecosystem services - Wildlife Habitat

Habitat Connectivity

We use a variety of methods for identifying key habitat patches and corridors vital to maintaining habitat connectivity across multiple scales for different species (Rayfield, Pelletier, Dumitru, Cardille et al., 2016). By coupling these methods with our open-source ST-Connect package for SyncroSim, we forecast how a landscape’s habitat connectivity may be affected by varying land management and climate change scenarios. For example ApexRMS has applied this approach locally to prioritize future conservation efforts in Southern Ontario, and around the city of Montreal, Canada (Albert, Rayfield, Dumitru, and Gonzalez, 2017).

HabitatConnectivityMontreal2

Patches of species' suitable habitat ranked on a scale of low to high priority for future habitat connectivity modeled using the SyncroSim package, ST-Connect.

Selected Clients: 

Ecosystem services - Habitat connectivity

Selected Clients: 

Ecosystem services - Habitat connectivity

Other Focus Areas

Landscape Change

We develop tools and techniques for forecasting changes in vegetation and land cover, including changes due to wildfire.

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Population Dynamics

We predict the dynamics of animal populations and disease, including COVID-19.

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