Environmental Modeling & Assessment

, Volume 9, Issue 3, pp 179–187 | Cite as

A Scenario Optimization Model for Dynamic Reserve Site Selection

  • Stephanie A. Snyder
  • Robert G. Haight
  • Charles S. ReVelle


Conservation planners are called upon to make choices and trade-offs about the preservation of natural areas for the protection of species in the face of development pressures. We addressed the problem of selecting sites for protection over time with the objective of maximizing species representation, with uncertainty about future site development, and with periodic constraints on the number of sites that can be selected. We developed a 0–1, linear optimization model with 2 periods to select the sites that maximize expected species coverage subject to budget constraints. The model is based on the idea that development uncertainty can be characterized by a set of scenarios, each of which is a possible second-period development outcome for the set of sites. We also suggest that our 2-period model can be used in a sequential fashion that is consistent with adaptive planning. Results are presented for the Fox River watershed in Chicago.

scenario optimization robust optimization reserve site selection integer programming incomplete information maximal covering problem adaptive management 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. [1]
    P.H. Gobster, R.G. Haight and D. Shriner, Landscape change in the Midwest: An integrated research and development program, Journal of Forestry 98(3) (2000) 9–14.Google Scholar
  2. [2]
    L.E. Hollis and W. Fulton, Open Space Protection: Conservation Meets Growth Management (The Brookings Institution Center on Ur-ban and Metropolitan Policy, Washington, DC, 2002.Google Scholar
  3. [3]
    R.F. Noss and A.Y. Cooperrider, Saving Nature's Legacy (Island Press, Washington, DC, 1994).Google Scholar
  4. [4]
    S.L. Pimm and J.H. Lawton, Planning for biodiversity, Science 279 (1998) 2068–2069.Google Scholar
  5. [5]
    A. Ando, J.D. Camm, S. Polasky and A.R. Solow, Species distrib-utions, land values, and efficient conservation, Science 279 (1998) 2126–2128.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. [6]
    S.E. Kingsland, Creating a science of nature reserve design: perspec-tives from history, Environmental Modeling and Assessment 7 (2002) 61–69.Google Scholar
  7. [7]
    R.L. Pressey, C.J. Humphries, C.R. Margules, R.I. Vane-Wright and P.H. Williams, Beyond opportunism: key principles for systematic reserve selection, Trends in Ecology and Evolution 8 (1993) 124–128.Google Scholar
  8. [8]
    C.R. Margules and R.L. Pressey, Systematic conservation planning, Nature 405 (2000) 243–253.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. [9]
    C.S. ReVelle, J.C. Williams and J.J. Boland, Counterpart models in facility location science and reserve selection science, Environmental Modeling and Assessment 7 (2002) 71–80.Google Scholar
  10. [10]
    K.D. Cocks and I.A. Baird, Using mathematical programming to ad-dress the multiple reserve selection problem: an example from the Eyre Peninsula, South Australia, Biological Conservation 49 (1989) 113–130.Google Scholar
  11. [11]
    J. Saetersdal, J.M. Line and H.J. Birks, How to maximize biologi-cal diversity in nature reserve selection: vascular plants and breeding birds in deciduous woodlands, western Norway, Biological Conserva-tion 66 (1993) 131–138.Google Scholar
  12. [12]
    J.D. Camm, S. Polasky, A. Solow and B. Csuti, A note on optimal al-gorithms for reserve site selection, Biological Conservation 78 (1996) 353–355.Google Scholar
  13. [13]
    R.L. Church, D.M. Stoms, and F.W. Davis, Reserve selection as a maximal covering location problem, Biological Conservation 76 (1996) 105–112.Google Scholar
  14. [14]
    C.A. Willis, R. Lombard, B. Cowling, B. Heydenrych and C. Burgers, Reserve systems for limestone endemic flora of the Cape Lowland fynbos: iterative versus linear programming techniques, Biological Conservation 77 (1996) 3–62.Google Scholar
  15. [15]
    J.C. Williams and C.S. ReVelle, Applying mathematical program-ming to reserve selection, Environmental Modeling and Assessment 2 (1997) 167–175.Google Scholar
  16. [16]
    S.A. Snyder, L.E. Tyrrell and R.G. Haight, An optimization approach to selecting research natural areas in national forests, Forest Science 45 (1999) 458–469.Google Scholar
  17. [17]
    S. Polasky, J.D. Camm and B. Garber-Yonts, Selecting biological re-serves cost effectively: an application to terrestrial vertebrate conser-vation in Oregon, Land Economics 77 (2001) 68–78.Google Scholar
  18. [18]
    S.A. Malcolm and S.A. Zenios, Robust optimization for power sys-tems capacity expansion under uncertainty, Journal of the Operational Research Society 45 (1994) 1040–1049.Google Scholar
  19. [19]
    J.M. Mulvey, R.J. Vanderbei and S.A. Zenios, Robust optimization of large-scale systems, Operations Research 43(2) (1995) 264–281.Google Scholar
  20. [20]
    P. Kouvelis and G. Yu, Robust Discrete Optimization and Its Applica-tions (Kluwer Academic Publishers, Netherlands, 1997).Google Scholar
  21. [21]
    C. Costello and S. Polasky, Dynamic reserve site selection, Energy and Resource Economics (2003, in press).Google Scholar
  22. [22]
    K.M. Johnson, The changing face of Chicago: demographic trends in the 1990s, Chicago Fed Letter #176, April, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Chicago, IL (2002).Google Scholar
  23. [23]
    Openlands Project, Under pressure: land consumption in the Chicago region 1998–2028, Openlands Project, Chicago (1999).Google Scholar
  24. [24]
    J.A. Ruliffson, P.H. Gobster, R.G. Haight and F.R. Homans, Niches in the urban forest: organizations, goals, and cooperation in metropoli-tan open space acquisition, Journal of Forestry 100(6) (2002) 16–23.Google Scholar
  25. [25]
    A.M. Law and W.D. Kelton, Simulation Modeling and Analysis (McGraw-Hill, New York, NY, 1982).Google Scholar
  26. [26]
    GAMS Development Corporation, General Algebraic Modeling Sys-tem. Version 2.25.090 (Washington, DC, 1990).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephanie A. Snyder
    • 1
  • Robert G. Haight
    • 1
  • Charles S. ReVelle
    • 2
  1. 1.USDA Forest ServiceNorth Central Research StationSt. PaulUSA
  2. 2.Johns Hopkins UniversityDepartment of Geography and Environmental EngineeringBaltimoreUSA

Personalised recommendations