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North Coast Marine Information System
The North Coast MLPA project was initiated via an agreement between the Humboldt State University Sponsored Programs Foundation the Resource Legacy Fund Foundation. The objective for the project was to assemble information regarding the best available science relating to the Northern California Coast in preparation for the future creation and management of MLPAs on the North Coast of California. To accomplish this task, we developed the North Coast Marine Information System, a web‐based portal providing access to a variety of existing data. The project represents an initial scan of the available scientific literature relating to the North Coast as well as the available mapped information in the form of Geographic Information System (GIS) data. The primary outcomes of the project include: 1. A searchable document database of 1018 records, including citations for all available peer‐reviewed literature, graduate theses and agency reports. 2. A series of 37 maps for the region, showing essential marine habitats, water quality and monitoring data. 3. An interactive map to provide visitors to the site with the ability to select geospatial data layers of interest and to pan and zoom the map interactively. We believe that the development of these initial document and geospatial databases, maps and tools provide a strong basis for developing a better understanding of the marine resources of the North Coast of California. We were also able to gain an understanding of the significant gaps in the scientific knowledge in the region. This information will prove useful in prioritizing needed scientific studies necessary to inform the establishment and long‐term monitoring of MLPA sites on the North Coast of California.