Merced River Plan ~ research and references
Yosemite National Park commissioned several 2010 research projects into facets of the Merced River's natural or cultural history. These river-related research studies were intended to augment the park's existing knowledge base of the current conditions of the Merced Wild and Scenic River as well as its condition at the time of designation in 1987. Yosemite staff completed these projects with assistance from National Park Service contractors, university professors, and U.S. Geological Survey personnel. The results of this research, combined with existing resources knowledge, has assisted park managers in assessing the condition of the river's values, including water quality, free-flowing condition, and outstandingly remarkable values. These are the values that merit the river's designation as "Wild and Scenic," pursuant to the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act.
The Merced Wild and Scenic River Values Draft Baseline Conditions Report, first published in April 2011, has been updated in July 2012 to include insight from research studies, as well as pertinent information from public review and comment on the report.
The condition assessment of the river values has been an iterative and ongoing process and is a critical part of the foundational framework of the Merced River Plan (MRP). Management actions proposed in the MRP will address issues brought forward as a result of the condition assessment. This report will also be included as a reference in the Merced Wild and Scenic River Draft Comprehensive Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement, released in January 2013.
Yosemite's resource specialists have gained an updated understanding on cultural resources in the river corridor. The park completed:
Due to culturally-sensitive details, these reports cannot, by law, be published for review.
REFERENCES TO REVIEW: A variety of references have informed the Merced River Draft Plan.These references include:
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