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Cuenca del rio Orinoco Reporte de Salud 2016 (Report card) Permanent Link

Este reporte de salud provee una evaluación transparente, oportuna y geográficamente detallada de la cuenca del río Orinoco. Para el año 2016, el reporte incluye once indicadores bajo las categorías de Biodiversidad, Manejo y gobernanza, Ecosistemas y paisaje, Economía, Gente y cultura, y Agua. En el 2016, la calificación global para la cuenca del río Orinoco fue de 63% o B-. Esto indica que el Orinoco cuenta con una salud moderadamente buena. Adicional al reporte general de la cuenca del río Orinoco, existen reportes individuales para diez sub-cuencas que proveen información detallada. Para más detalles visite el reporte en la página web orinocoriver.ecoreportcard.org.

Massive Algal Bloom Leads to Record Fish Kill (Brochure) Permanent Link

Over 32 tons of dead fish were removed from the Indian River Lagoon and many more sank to the bottom

As an Indian River Lagoon report card was being prepared in a collaboration between the Marine Resource Council and IAN, a brown algal bloom led to huge numbers of dead fish and other aquatic life. This Florida ecosystem of a chain of coastal rivers and lagoons has been struggling for years under a heavy pollution load entering its waters. In March 2016, a particular sequence of events — on-going excess nutrient input, warm winter temperatures, and heavy spring rainfall with strong winds that resuspended nutrients stored in the bottom — launched a brown tide bloom and a resulting hypoxic condition that caused the kill. Even with this preliminary understanding, scientists, resource managers, and concerned citizens continue to look for clarification as to what happened and how to prevent such an event from happening in the future.

2015 Chesapeake Bay Report Card (Report card) Permanent Link

This report card provides a transparent, timely, and geographically detailed assessment of Chesapeake Bay. In 2015, the report card includes five water quality indicators and two biotic indicators. In 2015, the overall grade for Chesapeake Bay is a 53%, a C. This means the Bay is in moderate health. Long term trends of each reporting region health and a fisheries index are also presented. For further details, visit the Report Card website.

Avaliando a saúde da Baía de Guanabara e sua Bacia Hidrográfica (Newsletter) Permanent Link

Nós realizamos um workshop com o objetivo de produzir um Boletim (Score Card) para a Baía de Guanabara e sua bacia hidrográfica. Essa newsletter resume as discussões que aconteceram entre um grupo de cientistas sociais e ambientais, engenheiros e representates do governo, reunidos para desenvolver um esboço preliminar dos indicadores e regiões a serem reportadas para a avaliação da Baía de Guanabara e sua bacia hidrográfica.

Assessing the health of Guanabara Bay and its river basins (Newsletter) Permanent Link

We held an initial workshop April 25, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to begin production of a report card for the Guanabara Bay and its watershed. This newsletter summarizes the discussions with environmental and social scientists, engineers, and government officials who developed a first draft of the indicators and reporting regions for the assessment of Guanabara Bay and its river basins.

National Capital Parks-East Natural Resource Condition Assessment (Report) Permanent Link

Natural Resource Report NPS/NACE/NRR–2016/1197

Walsh BM, Campbell JP, Costanzo SD, Dennison WC, Lehman M, Milton M, Nortrup M, Syphax S

The National Capital Parks–East (NACE) provides a natural haven for the urbanized Washington, D.C., area. NACE includes 14 major park areas that comprise more than 8,000 acres of the Atlantic Coastal Plain from Anne Arundel County, Maryland, through the eastern part of Washington, D.C., to Prince George’s and Charles counties, Maryland. In addition to numerous historic and cultural sites, these NPS units protect natural areas for recreation, parkways, historical artifacts and structures, archaeological sites, wetlands, stream valleys, forests, wildlife, and vegetation. The natural areas within National Capital Parks-East are extremely rich both in biodiversity and in historical context. The park provides islands of refuge for many uncommon plant and animal species in the highly urbanized Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, protecting a variety of cultural and natural resources. Additionally, NACE provides opportunities for the public to foster awareness of the importance of species preservation, biological diversity, natural systems and processes, and the value of natural open space in an urban environment.

Under threat from surrounding land use and regionally poor air quality, the natural resources in NACE are in degraded condition overall. Climate change is predicted to negatively affect many of the natural resources of the park, including increasing ozone levels and particle pollution, raising water temperature, changing forest composition, and affecting exotic species and forest pests and disease.



2015 Chester River Report Card (Report card) Permanent Link

produced by Chester River Association

Chester River Association

In 2015, the Chester River received an overall grade of C+. CRA's Chester River Report Card is the product of tremendous volunteer effort and scientific analysis. The Chester Tester Citizen Scientists collect data at 27 stream sites twice monthly, year round. Our Riverkeeper and Watershed Manager collect samples from the mainstem of the Chester River from Eastern Neck Island to Crumpton. Samples are processed via established scientific protocols and grades are calculated using methods developed by the Mid-Atlantic Tributary Assessment Coalition (MTAC). If you have any questions regarding the Report Card, please contact CRA Watershed Manager, Tim Trumbauer (ttrumbauer@chesterriverassociation.org)

Ecological Drought in the North Central United States (Newsletter) Permanent Link

Droughts of the future will not be droughts of the past

The Department of the Interior Climate Science Centers (CSCs) and their managing organization, the National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center at the U.S. Geological Survey, have chosen the emerging climate science field of Ecological Drought as a research focus area. This newsletter highlights the outcomes of a two-day workshop held in Fort Collins, Colorado, as part of a series of meetings at each of the nation’s eight CSCs. These workshops are aimed at collating our existing knowledge of the ecological impacts, resistance, and recovery from drought.

A Look Inside New York Harbor (Poster) Permanent Link

New York Harbor is a large, iconic and complex body of water. The harbor is an important part of New York City and its millions of residents, and has been massively changed by human activities. These changes have altered the shorelines, water flow, plants and animals of the harbor. These drawings of New York Harbor help explain what is happening below the water surface—a look inside.

George Washington Memorial Parkway Natural Resource Condition Assessment (Report) Permanent Link

Natural Resource Report NPS/GWMP/NRR 2016/1121

Walsh BW, Costanzo SC, Dennison WC, Campbell JP, Lehman M, Nortrup M, Steury B, Monteleone S

George Washington Memorial Parkway was developed as a scenic parkway to help preserve the Potomac River Gorge and shoreline while serving as a memorial to the first President of the United States, George Washington. The Potomac Gorge is one of the most significant natural areas in the United States, and is home to more than 400 occurrences of over 200 rare species and communities. The park houses several unique habitats, including a major river system with numerous tributaries, stands of upland forest, seeps and springs, and abundant wetlands. The vital signs framework was used to assess natural resource condition within George Washington Memorial Parkway. Natural resources in George Washington Memorial Parkway are in degraded condition overall, and are under threat from surrounding land use, regionally poor air quality, overpopulation of deer, and exotic species and pests. Climate change is predicted to negatively affect many of the natural resources of the park, including increasing ozone levels and particle pollution, raising the water temperature of streams, changing forest composition, and allowing for the success of exotic species and forest pests and disease.

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"Writing crystallizes thought and thought produces action." Paul J. Meyer


A goal of IAN Press is to empower scientists to directly communicate their ideas and concepts. Publications from IAN Press are designed to transform the uninterested to interested; the interested to involved and the involved to engaged.

IAN Press products are designed to be examples of good science communication principles, and the hope is that others will employ these principles so that scientific understanding can be disseminated widely as possible. The production of IAN Press communication publications involves experimentation with communication techniques and, as such, provides various ideas for science communication that can be emulated.

The comparisons and contrasts that IAN Press provides on environmental subjects intend to stimulate scientists, managers, practitioners, policy makers, students and other readers to think more broadly and expansively about the region and issues that they face. The extensive use of visual elements accesses a broader cultural diversity as well, which allow for more global perspectives.

The conclusions and recommendations presented in IAN Press publications are crafted to empower actions, plant seeds of ideas and provide justification for people to take appropriate action to find solutions to environmental problems. The conclusions are made as explicit as possible by employing active titles and featuring them prominently (e.g., front section of books or back cover of newsletters).

On costs

IAN Press does not provide author royalties and the design and layout of the publications conducted by a talented team of Science Communicators is underwritten by various grants and contracts. Marketing is limited to the internet and word-of-mouth, also reducing costs. Thus, the price of IAN Press publications is solely to reimburse the actual printing costs entailed. The intent is to provide the broadest possible readership, thus keeping costs as low as possible is paramount. Typically, full color is used, virtually on every page, which does increase print costs, however, the use of color is a key element in providing accessible information to a wide audience and the lack of author royalties or design/layout charges.

Peer review

IAN Press undertakes a rigorous review process by both peer scientists and resource managers. In addition, Integration and Application Network Science Integrators and Science Communicators read, edit and review all aspects of IAN Press publications, including text, conceptual diagrams, photographs, maps, figures and tables. Many IAN Press publications are multi-authored, and each author contributes to the review and editing of the entire publication. This is not the classical peer review system of a limited number of anonymous reviewers working with an editor to recommend changes, rather a larger number of non-anonymous reviewers that develop consensus on each word, visual element and recommendation. The review process is often accelerated by IAN Press to accommodate timely publication.


IAN Press attempts to be as authorship inclusive as possible and to provide attribution to each visual element. Authorship is not ranked or ordered, and the credibility of the IAN Press product should be based on the scientific data presented and the collective effort of a multiple of contributors, both with and without formal academic training.

Science Communicators are the key element in the production of IAN Press documents. They design the layout of the document, obtain and edit the visual elements, designate the amount and style of text, and orchestrate the review and editing process. IAN Press documents are produced using a 'storyboard' approach, in which the central message(s) are identified and various visual elements selected to support the central message(s). This is in contrast to the more traditional method of writing text and adding in visuals subsequently. In video and film production, storyboards are used and the producer is key to assembling the visual elements. Science Communicators serve in an equivalent role in terms of assembling all the pieces that go into the publication.


IAN Press relies extensively on color for photographs, maps, conceptual diagrams, figures and even text and tables to a limited degree. The use of color allows for an increased data density and provides a bigger visual impact considering the amount of the human brain devoted to visual discrimination of colors. Color allows for greater discrimination of visual elements and in data presentation, a closer juxtaposition of different elements and greater comparative utility. The preponderance of color printers and the ability of electronic versions to be displayed in color promote the inexpensive dissemination of full color documents. In order to help color-blind people compensate, an effort is made to provide other visual clues in graphics, such as symbols with different shapes or map delineations with different shading or texture, but some of the visual impact will be compromised.


IAN Press does not target a narrow, specific audience, rather attempts to be as inclusive as possible. As the world becomes more specialized, with marketing forces that promote highly targeted advertising campaigns, IAN Press products attempt to reach the broadest audience possible. IAN Press attempts to raise the bar rather than dumb down the message by using non-technical language, defining all terms and reducing acronym use. By providing synthesis, visualizations and context, we feel that relatively sophisticated concepts can be grasped by a non-technical audience. In fact, science has become highly specialized and often the language, tools and approaches used in various scientific disciplines are relatively incomprehensible to specialists in other disciplines. Thus, one audience of IAN Press is scientists from other specialties to encourage inter-disciplinary thinking and approaches.

Why use print media?

With the growing popularity of electronic media, the carbon footprint involved in producing and distributing paper products, and the ability to provide infinite resources via the web, it could be argued that IAN Press should disseminate entirely via electronic means. While IAN Press provides downloadable, web accessible materials, IAN Press continues to produces written products for the following reasons:

  1. There is rigor and discipline required in producing science communication products that have limited 'real estate', that, is limited amounts of space to convey a message. A paper product maintains focus, while web links can lead to tangential issues. The priority setting required to establish the final layout and include various communication elements is important in conveying information. Fixed 'real estate' forces condensation, synthesis and integration. Every visual element is uniquely created for the purpose of conveying the specific information intended, rather than repurposed from other sources.
  2. The written product invites non-linear reading, and a quick scan allows readers to delve into the visual elements most interesting to them. If a reader is most attracted to photographs, maps, conceptual diagrams, or figures, they can migrate to these elements and the figure legends should be self explanatory. Alternatively, if reading text is the preferred way of obtaining information, the text is designed to be self sufficient. The juxtaposition of text and various visual elements also conveys important information, something that can be lost via hyperlinks on the web. In addition, electronic books with the current technology do not support color graphics.
  3. Since various IAN Press products are intended to inform a broad community from policy makers to the general public, the weight of scientific support that can be marshaled can be a factor in empowering people to action. In order to make an impact, the difference between hundreds of web pages and hundreds of printed pages is one reason to provide print versions of IAN products. In addition, internet access is not equally applied globally or socially, and in some societies and sectors of society, a written product provides a more accessible source, particularly through libraries and schools.
  4. Printed materials provide a 'time stamp', a fixed point of time when the data are assembled and the conclusions are reached. Rather than constantly updating the data and conclusions, drawing the line in the sand as to what is known at a particular time point is what printed products do. The shelf life of science communication products should be somewhat limited due to the increased scientific understanding based on ongoing research, yet the record of what is known, and when it is known, provides an important archival body of information.
  5. "The product drives the collaborative process"; in that the science communication product forces an intensely collaborative process of obtaining and refining visual elements, drafting and editing text, and experimenting with layout and design. While this collaborative process can be conducted with the production of web materials, print deadlines are a good way to insure timely delivery. In addition, to obtain buy-in from many scientists whose training and experience are in producing printed papers and books, printed copies are often necessary.