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Baldwin Conservation Lab at Clemson University

The Baldwin lab at Clemson University is committed to examining pressing ecological concerns throughout the Appalachians from the Gaspe' Penninsula to central Alabama. However, most of the current work being done in the lab is concentrated in the Southern Blue Ridge Mountains. Clemson is conveniently located within a short drive to some of the most interesting aquatic landscapes in the country and furthermore, one of the worlds largest biodiversity hotspots for forest communities, salamanders, and freshwater mussels. This biodiversity, along with rich cultural and historical significance, makes this area prime for landscape-scale conservation planning.

Baldwin Conservation Lab at Clemson University

Baldwin Conservation Lab and the Appalachian LCC

Landscape-scale conservation planning drives much of the lab's research and cements its connection with the Appalachian LCC. The Appalachian LCC is committed to working with partners to develop landscape-level planning to support on-the- ground conservation decisions and projects. The Baldwin Conservation Lab supplies technical support to the AppLCC, informed by science and agreed upon by stakeholders, to address the conservation challenges of the Appalachian region for the 21st century. Currently, the lab is overseeing a Data Needs Assessment project for the Appalachian LCC that will produce an analysis of tools, data, and processes to deliver data products and identify critical new data needs.

Conservation Planning Process

Dr. Robert Baldwin of Clemson University explains in this video the steps involved in the conservation planning process.

Conservation planning identifies and prioritizes lands that encompass important natural or cultural resources across the landscape (e.g., critical watersheds, habitat for rare or threatened species) and develops protection and management strategies for these lands. It is a process where science is at the core of planning, but the science is informed by groups of stakeholders using their on-the-ground knowledge and expertise. The goal is to create interconnected reserves and matrix of managed lands that are resilient to the many environmental changes that are occurring rapidly on the landscape.

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