In the Programmatic Restoration Plan, the Trustees committed to develop a set of guidelines for monitoring and adaptive management practices that support implementation and evaluation of restoration projects.
In January 2018, the Trustee Council approved the Monitoring and Adaptive Management (MAM) Manual Version 1.0, which contains these guidelines. The MAM Manual serves as guidance for the Trustee Implementation Groups. It was written by the Cross-TIG Monitoring and Adaptive Management work group, which includes representatives of each of the Trustees.
The MAM Manual includes recommended procedures and guidelines that build upon the monitoring frameworks and conceptual monitoring plans developed for Early Restoration. It includes a template for project-specific MAM plans and monitoring guidance for wetlands, beaches and dunes, barrier islands, water quality, and recreational use restoration approaches. It also includes recommendations for implementing adaptive management at the program-level, when appropriate.
Trustee Implementation Groups will monitor and evaluate each restoration project over time. Monitoring provides feedback to inform decision-making through adaptive management. Adaptive management is a science-based approach to decision making. It is iterative and involves monitoring and the use of improved scientific understanding to repeatedly fine-tune restoration projects for improved results.
We will revise the MAM Manual periodically as we develop monitoring guidance for additional restoration approaches, develop approaches to evaluate broader restoration progress, and learn more about the best ways to measure restoration progress for different resources and environmental settings.
The MAM Manual is a good example of how we are working to ensure that the restoration projects selected for implementation will provide long-term benefits to the resources and services injured by the oil spill.
Note: In August 2019, the Trustees released an updated Manual Appendix E with new monitoring guidelines for restoration projects for oysters and submerged aquatic vegetation, and for projects that protect and conserve habitat.