Monitoring and evaluation for adaptive management.
(a) Plan monitoring strategy. Each plan must contain a practicable, effective, and efficient monitoring strategy to evaluate sustainability in the plan area ( §§ 219.19 through 219.21). The strategy must require monitoring of appropriate plan decisions and characteristics of sustainability.
(1) Monitoring and evaluation of ecological sustainability. The plan monitoring strategy for the monitoring and evaluation of ecological sustainability must require monitoring of:
(i) Ecosystem diversity. Monitoring must be used to evaluate the status and trend of selected physical and biological characteristics of ecosystem diversity ( § 219.20(a)(1) ). The plan monitoring strategy must document the reasons for selection of characteristics to be monitored, monitoring objectives, methodology, and designate critical values that will prompt reviews of plan decisions.
(ii) Species diversity. Monitoring must be used to evaluate focal species and species-at-risk as follows:
(A) The status and trends of ecological conditions known or suspected to support focal species and selected species-at-risk must be monitored. The plan monitoring strategy must document the reasons for the selection of species-at-risk for which ecological conditions are to be monitored, including the degree of risk to the species, the factors that put the species at risk, and the strength of association between ecological conditions and population dynamics.
(B) In addition to monitoring of ecological conditions, the plan monitoring strategy may require population monitoring for some focal species and some species-at-risk. This monitoring may be accomplished by a variety of methods including population occurrence and presence/absence data, sampling population characteristics, using population indices to track relative population trends, or inferring population status from ecological conditions.
(C) A decision by the responsible official to monitor populations and the responsible official's choice of methodologies for monitoring selected focal species and selected species-at-risk may be based upon factors that include, but are not limited to, the degree of risk to the species, the degree to which a species' life history characteristics lend themselves to monitoring, the reasons that a species is included in the list of focal species or species-at-risk, and the strength of association between ecological conditions and population dynamics. Monitoring of population trend is often appropriate in those cases where risk to species viability is high and population characteristics cannot be reliably inferred from ecological conditions. The reasons for selection of species, monitoring objectives, and methodologies must be documented as part of the plan monitoring strategy. Critical values that will prompt reviews of plan decisions must be designated in the monitoring strategy.
(iii) Monitoring effectiveness. As a part of the plan monitoring strategy, the responsible official must evaluate the effectiveness of selected characteristics of ecosystem diversity and species diversity in providing reliable information regarding ecological sustainability.
(2) Monitoring and evaluation of social and economic sustainability. The plan monitoring strategy for the monitoring and evaluation of social and economic sustainability should provide for periodic review of national, regional, and local supply and demand for products, services, and values. Special consideration should be given to those uses, values, products, and services that the National Forest System is uniquely poised to provide. Monitoring should improve the understanding of the National Forest System contributions to social and economic sustainability. The plan monitoring strategy must require the responsible official to evaluate the effectiveness of information and analyses described in § 219.21(a) in providing reliable information regarding social and economic sustainability.
(b) Monitoring of site-specific actions. The decision document authorizing a site-specific action should describe any required monitoring and evaluation for the site-specific action. The responsible official must determine that there is a reasonable expectation that anticipated funding is adequate to complete any required monitoring and evaluation prior to authorizing a site-specific action.
(c) Monitoring methods. Unless required by the monitoring strategy, monitoring methods may be changed to reflect new information without plan amendment or revision.
(d) Use of monitoring information. Where monitoring and evaluation is required by the plan monitoring strategy, the responsible official must ensure that monitoring information is used to determine one or more of the following:
(1) If site-specific actions are completed as specified in applicable decision documents;
(2) If the aggregated outcomes and effects of completed and ongoing actions are achieving or contributing to the desired conditions;
(3) If key assumptions identified for monitoring in plan decisions remain valid; and
(4) If plan or site-specific decisions need to be modified.
(e) Coordination of monitoring activities. To the extent practicable, monitoring and evaluation should be conducted jointly with other federal agencies, state, local, and tribal governments, scientific and academic communities, and others. In addition, the responsible official must provide appropriate opportunities for the public to be involved and utilize scientists as described in § 219.23.
(f) Annual monitoring and evaluation report. The responsible official must prepare a monitoring and evaluation report for the plan area within 6 months following the end of each fiscal year. The report must be maintained with the plan documents ( § 219.30(d)(5) ), and include the following:
(1) A list or reference to monitoring required by the plan; and
(2) A summary of the results of monitoring and evaluation performed during the preceding fiscal year and appropriate results from previous years. The summary must include:
(i) A description of the progress toward achievement of desired conditions within the plan area; and
(ii) A description of the plan area's contribution to the achievement of applicable outcomes of the Forest Service national strategic plan.
Title 36 published on 2012-07-01
The following are only the Rules published in the Federal Register after the published date of Title 36.
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This is a list of United States Code sections, Statutes at Large, Public Laws, and Presidential Documents, which provide rulemaking authority for this CFR Part.