[PAST EVENT] GIS Analysis & Cartography to Support Resource Management Decisions

February 5, 2021
1pm - 2pm

This talk will use case studies from the seafloor near Rhode Island and the deserts and mountains of Arizona to demonstrate how to combine, synthesize, and translate spatial data into information that is accessible to resource managers for decision-making. The use of visually compelling graphics and maps as communication and management tools will also be covered. Pre- and post-construction surveys at the first offshore wind farm in the U.S., the Block Island Wind Farm, consisting of multibeam bathymetry, video, and still imagery were conducted to detect and document anchor-related impacts to complex hard bottom seafloor habitats. Aerial imagery was used to create a human modification data set for the non-Tribal lands of Arizona, which was analyzed to derive data on contiguous areas of intact lands to inform conservation and mitigation recommendations for a proposed new interstate.

Marisa Guarinello (she/her) is a Senior Scientist with INSPIRE Environmental, a marine science consulting company that specializes in assessing the seafloor using imagery-based techniques. She currently leads INSPIRE’s benthic habitat mapping program, integrating bathymetry, backscatter, and side-scan sonar data with imagery data to map benthic habitats for the purpose of assessing potential effects of offshore wind installations to essential fish habitat. In addition, she has conducted marine research in places as diverse as the Arctic and American Samoa, worked as a conservation spatial analyst in Arizona, coordinated data sharing and management for a state-wide ecosystem services research program in Idaho, and helped set nationwide policies for EPA’s Superfund program. Marisa formally trained in benthic ecology at the Graduate School of Oceanography - University of Rhode Island (M.S.) and is a proud alumna of William & Mary, having graduated with a B.S. in Biology and Environmental Science in 2002.