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Disturbance and Recovery Trajectories (DART) Landscape Restoration Planning April 24th 2012

Analytics Conference Tim Vinge Sustainable Resource Development

Presentation Outline 1. Introduction to restoration planning. 2. The concept of DART 3. Building the DART board 4. Strategic opportunities for DART modeling

5. Tactical opportunities for DART 6. Summary comments and questions

Introduction What are our issues ?

Landscape Fragmentation

Caribou numbers are dwindling in relation to a number of complicated factors

Access Issues

Increased Predation Why restore cutlines?

Light-3D Seismic

Introduction Disturbance Types

Heavy-2D Seismic

What kind of disturbances?

Intact soils layer (LFH) Nutrient cycling working

Soils layer not intact (LFH)

Forest influence close by

Little vegetation reestablished

Soils not compacted

Soils compacted

Woody debris available

No woody debris

Fast recovery

Slow recovery

Recovery of disturbances is an important component of landscape management

Introduction What is the challenge ?

Vegetation responses and treatments to disturbance vary across ecosites

Wide range of ecosites and responses. Field Guide to Ecosites of West Central Alberta

Building the DART Program

What is Dart all about ?

Strategic and Tactical Planning Decision Support System

DART is an acronym that stands for Disturbance and Recovery Trajectories.

Program proponents are the U of A, AIEES (Alberta Innovates Energy and Environment Solutions) ,OSLI (Oil Sands Leadership Initiative) and SRD.

Use wet area mapping (Lidar data) ,ecological and disturbance information to develop predictive and prescriptive vegetation recovery models.

Inform landscape models on potential timelines and options for linear recovery (Natural and assisted).

Will help to identify limiting factors associated with revegetation strategies and will help to prioritize sites for restoration work.

Provide best alternatives for treatments as well as costs.

How will DART models be built ? 1.


Select a study area based on availability of disturbances and ecosite combinations and available data. Assemble inventory data: a) b) c) d) e)

3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Seismic line disturbance history Lidar Wet Area Mapping (WAM) Alberta Vegetation Inventory (Avi) Lineal Inventory Data (Softcopy interpreted data)

Stratify sites according to disturbances and ecosite combinations. Design sampling program including plot protocols. Complete field sampling program. Evaluate inventory parameters in relation to vegetation reestablishment on seismic lines. Build models for predicting vegetation re-establishment. Test the model on alternate areas. Lines that have been recently cleared will not be selected for research. Only minimal use lines (Vegetation re-establishment).

What area was selected for the research? Project Area Name - Stony Mountain 800 CEMA Access Management

1. CEMA Access Management Pilot area near Fort McMurray.

Pilot Area 2. Linear Footprint Management Subgroup 1. Linear Footprint Management Pilot on 32 townships south of Fort McMurray. 2. Lineal inventory completed using Softcopy Technology

Seismic Lineal Inventory Greenlink Forestry

Series of inventory variables collected for linear features

Stony Mountain 800 Project Area

Inventory data available for the project area? Line type (Seismic, Pipeline..) a. Line width b. Natural subregion c. Mineral expression (Apron, Blanket, Depression‌) d. Organic expression (Bowl, Dome‌) e. Soil moisture f. Soil nutrients g. Ecosite h. Line utilization i.

Line utilization length


Line origin date (First origin, Last origin Origin fit)

k. Vegetation structure l.

Vegetation coverclass

m. Vegetation distribution class n. Distribution type

o. Adjacent vegetation type

Total Seismic, 10,043 km, 82%

2D Seismic, 3628 km, 30%

3D Seismic, 6415 km, 52%

Trails, 924 km, 8% Pipeline, 544km , 4% Roads, 402km , Other, 3% 229km , 2% Well Sites, 129 km, 1%

Facilities, 5 km, <1% Fire Breaks, 19km , <1% Gravel Pits, 18 km, <1%













THREE CLASSES: Reclaimed (V >= 1.0): The disturbance has suitable vegetation growing within acceptable parameters (i.e. density, distribution, species) to meet management objectives; Inclined (0.5 <V <1.0): The disturbance has vegetation growing but currently not within acceptable parameters and is expected to become reclaimed sometime in the future; Deficient (V <0.5): The disturbance has no vegetation or vegetation is growing well below the acceptable parameters. It is not clear whether these lines are, or will be, on a reclaimed trajectory in the near future.

Deficient, 3,764 , 64%

Inclined, 830 , 14%

Reclaimed, 1,304 , 22%

DART would define vegetation trajectories over time

Why are these areas not revegetating?

Why are these areas revegetating?

Vegetation Recovery

Digital Layers Lidar Information

With or Without Trees - Landform Only USDA Website

Digital Layers Lidar Information

Accurate landform representation

Wet Area Mapping

USDA Website

Digital Layers Wet Area Mapping

Barry White ASRD Completed for large drainage areas

Digital Layers Vegetation Information (AVI)

Alberta Vegetation Inventory Ecological Classification

Tactical Applications? Modeling to determine which lines need assistance ? Focus 1 Area 5 years to complete

Develop a plan to restore seismic lines Focus 2 Area 5 years to complete

Vegetation Reestablishment

Meet Landscape Objectives

Access Access Control

Restored landscape over time




MOUND, 570, 10%

LFN, 961, 17%

DART would define treatments and application of treatments as well as resultant vegetation trajectories

Summary Comments 1.

DART will be used at the tactical and strategic planning levels in combination with other land use considerations (recreation, energy, forestry, wildlife) to formulate restoration plans.


Vegetation recovery is based on the original disturbance, subsequent line usage and the ecosite.


Some lines will come back fairly quickly and some very slowly. We have to sort out the wheat from the chaff so to speak.


Models will be very useful for making strategic decisions on where to focus efforts for line restoration (caribou).


Treatments will vary by ecosite. DART will help ensure that the correct treatments are being used.


We have enough knowledge and experience to build DART.


DART will form an important part of future landscape assessments.


Dart is only a part of a more comprehensive landscape evaluation and planning program.


Letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s get started anyways

Tim Vinge - Disturbance and Recovery Trajectories (DART)  
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