Ecological Assessment
Socioeconomic Assessment
Vulnerability Assessment
Programmatic Assessment
Criteria and Indicators for Sustainability
Data & Indicators

Criterion 1: Conservation of biological diversity

Butterfly next to leaf Biological diversity (biodiversity) is a term used to denote variability among living organisms, including ecosystem diversity, species diversity, and genetic diversity. Ecosystem diversity is the variety of different ecosystems, which are characterized by the types of plants and animals and the physical environment found in each. Species diversity is the number and range of different species located within a given area. Genetic diversity refers to the range of genetic characteristics found within a species. Biodiversity is critical for the sustainability of forests because it enables ecosystems to respond to external influences, to recover from disturbances, and to support important ecological processes. Forest ecosystems are particularly important to biodiversity in Maryland, where forests originally occupied over 90% of the land area. All components of a given ecosystem are tied together in an intricate web, and alterations can have dramatic impacts on the entire system. By conserving biological diversity, forests should have the ability to function, reproduce, and remain productive.

Indicator 1: Large Forest Blocks
Indicator 2: Interior Forest
Indicator 3: Fragmentation Metrics
Indicator 4: Forest Community Types
Indicator 5: Green Infrastructure
Indicator 6: Forests Providing Habitat for Sensitive Species
Indicator 7: High Quality FIDS Habitat
Indicator 8: Potential FIDS Habitat
Indicator 9: Large Forest Blocks
Indicator 10: Headwater Streams in Interior Forest
Indicator 11: Forested Wetlands
Indicator 12: Ecological Ranking of Forest Lands

    Criterion 2