An adaptive approach to management is required whenever decisions about how to achieve a complex goal must be made under uncertainty. This almost always applies to ecosystem recovery because desired outcomes (such as responses of species to remedial actions), and driving factors (such as the behavior of humans, and weather-dependent processes) often cannot be predicted. When these factors interact with each other uncertainty is compounded. Progress therefore entails a deliberate ‘learn-andadjust-as-you-go’ approach that has become known as adaptive management (AM).
A "learn and adjust" strategy known as adaptive management plays a central role in state and federal Puget Sound recovery efforts. It is an approach that is gaining traction for ecosystem management worldwide. A December 2016 article from the Puget Sound Institute provides an overview of the concept and how it is being applied locally.
New EPA-funded Implementation Strategies are designed to target Puget Sound recovery in the most direct and coordinated way ever conducted by state and federal agencies. We report on how these strategies will affect Puget Sound’s Vital Signs for years to come, and why you should care (a lot).