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Numerous Laws, Acts, and Policies require geospatial data to benefit from the efficiencies in the management of public lands relative to natural resources. The collection and maintenance of geospatial data (e.g., GDA 2018) are guiding the management of data towards more findable, accessible, interoperability, reusable (a.k.a the FAIR data principles) and reduce duplication of efforts to support data-based decision making.

Problem and Solution

The Minerals and Geology Management (MGM) program sought to apply this guidance to establish National Geospatial data sets to address current data gaps related to conditional ownership, critical minerals, access to existing oil, gas and coal leases, and leasing rights, as well as data representing additional MGM data themes. This non-IT task supports the MGM program’s objectives of improved communication, reporting, and analysis based on relevant and accessible data.

Xentity worked with the FS staff, to develop a Data Dictionary standard to compile existing tabular and geospatial data that indicate where USFS-managed lands in Region 9 have a reversionary status, and develop a region-wide seamless geospatial layer. They created standardized, nationwide geospatial datasets related to two MGM themes: Critical Mineral Materials; and Large Mines on and near National Forest System Lands. Also, they compiled geospatial data representing the most recent leasing and Legal Land Description (LLD) information available from USFS and Bureau of Land Management partners. Furthermore, Xentity developed a geospatial standard (data dictionary, etc) and compiled data representing leasing stipulations on National Forest System lands. We will also develop a process to maintain and keep this information updated without substantial manual intervention. Finally, they developed priority geospatial datasets across MGM using established data governance and other best practices.

Outcome and Benefit

Xentity used appropriate Quality Controls to ensure the completeness of the data set layer before submitting for acceptance. The team also documented and followed Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) and documentation for workflows to ensure data quality. Also, Xentity provided a database migration to the Forest Service’s Enterprise Virtual Data Center (VDC). Most importantly, Xentity’s efforts helped address the current data gaps mentioned earlier. Also, they supported the MGM program’s objective of improved communication, reporting and analysis based on relevant and accessible data.