Lab 5 – Multi Criteria Evaluation

Lab 5 – Multi Criteria Evaluation


For this Lab, we paired up in groups of 3-4 and were instructed to predict the potential changes in habitat suitability of Sitka Spruce (Picea sitchensis) by the year 2080 based on projections of global climate change. We underwent an initial literature review to pinpoint certain climatic variables that were influential in dictating where the species grew. We then downloaded historical and future climate data for these variables and used the data to determine how and where the species habitat range would change. The variables my group and I decided would most greatly impact the Sitka Spruce’s suitability were: Mean Annual Temperature (MAT), Mean Annual Precipitation (MAP), Mean Maximum Temperature (Tmax), Mean Minimum Temperature (Tmin), Degree Days below 0°C (DD.0), Degree Days Above 5°C (DD.5), Temperature difference between MWMT and MCMT, or continentality °C (TD), Winter Precipitation (mm) (PPTwt). For our analysis we wanted to quantify climate variables through the use of zonal statistics. The zonal statistics table tool was used for each climate variable, in each time period. We calculated 1.5 standard deviations from the mean, to create an appropriate range at which the species could exist. We then added and subtracted STD(1.5) from the mean, to achieve minimum and maximum values for all data sets. This created the envelope of values that could potentially be suitable for the Sitka spruce in both current and projected climates.

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Click this link to view the Model Builder used to create the above map


This is a map of just 1 of the climatic variables instead of the 8 variables used above. This is only the Tmin variable, Minimum Monthly Temperature.

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