Proposed Information Collection-Alternative Futures for the Upper Las Vegas Wash
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is partnering with Utah State University to undertake a scientific study focused on the Upper Las Vegas Wash, which is managed by the BLM and located near the city of Las Vegas, Nevada. The BLM wants a better understanding of the interaction of the adjacent communities with the natural environment in this area. There are important linkages between social conditions in the greater Las Vegas metropolitan area and ecological conditions of the surrounding landscape. Ecological disturbance stemming from human use of the Upper Las Vegas Wash is complex and involves important relationships between the demographic characteristics of residents living in proximity to the area, and the nature of attachments and use patterns that can connect residents to the area. An understanding of the socio-economic characteristics of residents in conjunction with their spatial proximity to the wash will aid in our understanding of the ecological disturbance impacts, and will assist the BLM in implementing protective actions in the future. Modeling the complex linkages between ecological disturbances and the social, economic, and demographic characteristics of local populations requires analysis of both existing and newly-collected data. Thus, a critical component in this study is a social survey of residents who live adjacent to the Upper Las Vegas Wash. In order to obtain the required information from appropriate residents, a sampling design that will capture variation in spatial proximity to the wash is needed. For the purposes of consistency, continuity, and accuracy across multiple components of this research, the same linear transects established to determine the spatial attributes of disturbance fronts will be used to define the residential areas from which we will draw representative samples of local residents.