A Geospatial Approach to Conservation Prioritization: Examining the Applications of GIS-based Vegetation Data in Los Angeles County
The California Floristic Province is one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, one of 36 regions which contain over half of the world’s vegetation. With projected increases in anthropogenic land transformation and use, omnipresent impacts of global climate change, and threats of habitat fragmentation and loss, understanding the vegetation composition of Los Angeles County is integral to prioritizing conservation efforts. By creating one continuous dataset with regional dominant alliance type for the entirety of the county, rare vegetation types and their locations can be identified. The goal of this project is to create such data set and produce maps and associated analyses to create a comprehensive overview of the rare vegetation in Los Angeles County, highlight at-risk regions and any current gaps in protection, providing information and framework for structuring future management and conservation projects.