Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center
SUMMARY: The Habitat Needs Assessment (HNA) was officially noted in the "Report to Congress, An Evaluation of the Upper Mississippi River System, Environmental Management Program", U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Rock Island District, December 1997. The following quote establishes the baseline for the assessment:
A habitat needs assessment should be completed to establish a technically sound, consensus-based management framework or "blue print" for the restoration, protection and enhancement of the UMR ecosystem. This assessment would begin to identify, at system, pool, and reach levels, long term habitat requirements. It would also serve to refine the focus of future monitoring and research activities. The HNA is an undertaking which will help guide the process of planning and designing habitat rehabilitation and enhancement projects (HREP). It will also serve to assist in determining the type data the Long Term Resource Monitoring Program (LTRM) should collect in the future. HNA is not to provide all the answers for EMP selection in the future. The final product of the HNA will be a tool to be utilized by EMP professionals who will make selections at a later date. The budget for the HNA will be approximately $1 million.
- Details of the HNA are contained in the Scope of Work.
- Day to day management of the HNA will be carried out by the Mississippi Valley Division's St. Louis District through the use of a managerial/technical team that includes staff members with background in project management and environmental planning. Study progress is summarized in a status sheet.
- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will assist the Corps in conducting the study by providing a technical co-chair from it's Rock Island Field Office who will work closely with St. Louis District staff.
- Federal and state governmental organizations will be represented by staff from the Corps of Engineers: Mississippi Valley Division, St. Louis District, Rock Island District, St. Paul District; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; U.S. Department of Agriculture; U.S. Geological Survey; U.S. Maritime Administration; Upper Mississippi River Basin Association; and the states of Missouri, Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin and Minnesota. Environmental organizations and the general public shall also participate in developing the HNA.
- The HNA team consists of three teams:
- Technical "ecological" Team
- Mapping Team
- Public Involvement Team
- The HNA is not a research project. Existing data will be utilized. If data gaps exist, they will simply be noted for future consideration. The final HNA report will be completed by October 2000. Several meetings have taken place and teams have been organized and decisions have been made.
- A draft Project Management Plan (PMP) has been prepared and budget documents are underway: