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The EMAP-West assessment includes three resource components (coastal, surface waters, landscapes) and an information management component. A probability-based sampling approach is used to monitor the ecological condition of coastal and surface waters. The landscapes component uses remotely sensed imagery and takes a census approach. All three components will produce regional-scale assessments of ecological condition.

Component Objectives


The objectives of the Coastal component of EMAP-West are to:

  • Describe the current ecological condition of estuaries in Washington, Oregon, Alaska, California, and Hawaii.
  • Work with the states and others to build a strong program of ecological monitoring which will lead to better management and protection of western estuaries.
  • Develop the infrastructure in the Region and in the States to implement the monitoring program.

Web mapping includes the 1999 Coastal sampling stations.

View the photo gallery from 1999 Coastal sampling season.


The primary objectives of the Landscape component are to:

  • Transfer landscape indicator and assessment technology to the Regions for conducting regional-scale landscape assessments and identifying areas that are most vulnerable to declines in aquatic resources.
  • Conduct landscape indicator quantification studies to assist in the interpretation of specific landscape indicators relative to water resources.
  • Develop landscape approaches to assist the Regions in dealing with key non-point source pollution.
  • Assist the Regions in planning and implementing landscape assessments and in interpreting results.

Surface Water
Surface Waters

The purposes of the Surface Waters component are to:

Information Management
Information Management
The Information Management component aims to ensure that data are collected and managed using a core set of standards so that they may be exchanged and integrated with data both within the EMAP-West study and with other monitoring programs.

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