Level III Ecoregions of Central and South America
Level III Ecoregions of Central and South America
FGDC Metadata
DescriptionSpatialData StructureData QualityData SourceData DistributionMetadata
+ Resource Description
Citation
Information used to reference the data.
Title: Level III Ecoregions of Central and South America
Originators: US Environmental Protection Agency
Publisher: U.S. EPA Office of Research and Development (ORD) - National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory (NHEERL)
Publication place: Corvallis, OR
Publication date: 20111222
Description
A characterization of the data, including its intended use and limitations.
Abstract:
The USGS EROS Data Center and the U.S. EPA NHEERL-WED initiated this project to develop an ecological classification and ecoregion map for the Western Hemisphere (North and South America) that is consistent with recent U.S. EPA and North American ecoregion frameworks (CEC 1997; U.S. EPA 1998; Gallant et al. 1995).  This coverage includes a first approximation of ecological regions of Central and South America that is relatively consistent with the purpose and methods of those already completed frameworks for North America.  Designed to serve as a spatial framework for environmental resource assessment and management, ecoregions denote areas of general similarity in ecosystems and in the type, quality, and quantity of environmental resources.

This initial delineation of ecoregions was based on analysis of multiple types and scales of thematic maps including geology, physiography, soils, potential and existing vegetation, climate, landcover and agricultural uses, other ecological frameworks, and from other regional descriptive documents.
Maps and information of environmental characteristics of Central and South America and the Caribbean were collected from several U.S. university libraries, the EROS Data Center, the Library of Congress, the USGS Cartographic Information Center in Reston, and the U.S. State Department map library.  In addition to the variety of information from these thematic maps and descriptive texts, regional patterns were also assessed from the global land cover characteristics database obtained from 1-km Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) data (Loveland and Belward 1997; Loveland et al. 1998).  More detail on the philosophy, methodology, and references used in the compilation of these ecoregions can be found in Omernik (1995) and Griffith et al. (1998).

	Literature cited:
	Commission for Environmental Cooperation. 1997. Ecological regions of North America: Towards a common perspective. Commission for Environmental Cooperation. Montreal, Quebec, Canada. 71p.

	Gallant, A.L., E.F. Binnian, J.M. Omernik, and M.B. Shasby. 1995. Ecoregions of Alaska. U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1567. 73p.

	Griffith, G.E., J.M. Omernik, and S.H. Azevedo. 1998. Ecological classification of the Western Hemisphere. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory, Corvallis, Oregon. 47p. 

	Loveland, T.R. and Belward, A.S., 1997. The IGBP-DIS Global 1 km Land Cover Data Set, DISCover First Results.  International Journal of Remote Sensing 18(15): 3289-3295.

	Loveland, T.R., D.O. Ohlen, J.F. Brown, B.C. Reed, Z. Zhu, J.W. Merchant, and L. Yang. 1998. Western hemisphere land cover - progress toward a global land cover characteristics database. In: Proceedings, Pecora 13, Human Interactions with the Environment: Perspectives From Space.

	Omernik, J.M. 1995. Ecoregions: A spatial framework for environmental management.  In: Biological Assessment and Criteria: Tools for Water Resource Planning and Decision Making.  W.S. Davis and T.P. Simon (eds.). Lewis Publishers, Boca Raton, FL. pp. 49-62.

	U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 1998. Level III Ecoregions of the Continental United States, Map M-1 (revision of Omernik, 1987). National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory, Corvallis, Oregon.
			
Purpose:
Ecoregion maps assist managers of aquatic and terrestrial resources to understand the regional patterns of the realistically attainable quality of these resources.
Supplemental information:
Comments and questions regarding the Ecoregions of Central and South America should be addressed to Glenn Griffith, USGS, c/o US EPA., 200 SW 35th Street, Corvallis, OR 97333, (541)-754-4465, email:griffith.glenn@epa.gov Alternate: James Omernik, USGS, c/o US EPA, 200 SW 35th Street, Corvallis, OR 97333, (541)-754-4458, email:omernik.james@epa.gov. 

Electronic versions of ecoregion maps and posters, as well as other ecoregion resources are available at: http://www.epa.gov/wed/pages/ecoregions.htm.

Ecoregions were digitized at 1:5,000,000 or smaller scales and are intended for large geographic extents (i.e. states/provinces, multiple counties, or river basins).  Use for smaller areas, is not recommended.
Point Of Contact
Contact information for the individual or organization that is knowledgeable about the data.
Person: Marc Weber
Organization: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory (NHEERL)
Position: GIS Analyst
Phone: (541) 754-4469
Email: weber.marc@epa.gov
Instructions:
http://www.epa.gov/nheerl/
Address type: mailing address
Address:
200 S.W. 35th Street
City: Corvallis
State or Province: OR
Postal code: 97333
Time Period of Data
Time period(s) for which the data corresponds to the currentness reference.
Date: 20120502
Currentness reference:
Publication date
Status
The state of and maintenance information for the data.
Data status: Complete
Update frequency: As needed
Key Words
Words or phrases that summarize certain aspects of the data.
Theme:
Keywords: biota, boundaries, environment, location
Keyword thesaurus: ISO 19115 Topic Category
Theme:
Keywords: Biology, Conservation, Ecology, Ecosystem, Land, Natural Resources
Keyword thesaurus: EPA GIS Keyword Thesaurus
Place:
Keyword thesaurus: None
Data Access Constraints
Restrictions and legal prerequisites for accessing or using the data after access is granted.
Access constraints:
None.
Use constraints:
None. Please check sources, scale, accuracy, currentness and other available information. Please confirm that you are using the most recent copy of both data and metadata.  Acknowledgement of the EPA would be appreciated.
Data Security Information
Handling restrictions imposed on the data because of national security, privacy or other concerns.
Security classifiction system: FIPS Pub 199
Security classification: No Confidentiality
Security handling: Standard Technical Controls
+ Spatial Reference Information
Horizontal Coordinate System
Reference system from which linear or angular quantities are measured and assigned to the position that a point occupies.
Coordinate System Details
Map projection
Map projection name: International_1967_Albers
Standard parallel: -5.000000
Standard parallel: -42.000000
Longitude of central meridian: -60.000000
Latitude of projection origin: -32.000000
False easting: 0.0
False northing: 0.0
Planar Coordinate Information
Planar coordinate encoding method: coordinate pair
Coordinate representation:
Abscissa resolution: 0.0000000037527980722984474
Ordinate resolution: 0.0000000037527980722984474
Planar distance units: Meter
Geodetic model
Horizontal datum name: D International 1967
Ellipsoid name: International 1967
Semi-major axis: 6378137.0
Denominator of flattening ratio: 298.257222101
Spatial Domain
The geographic areal domain of the data that describes the western, eastern, northern, and southern geographic limits of data coverage.
Bounding Coordinates
In Unprojected coordinates (geographic)
BoundaryCoordinate
West-112.324122 (longitude)
East-23.246651 (longitude)
North30.311777 (latitude)
South-56.114264 (latitude)
+ Data Structure and Attribute Information
Overview
Summary of the information content of the data, including other references to complete descriptions of entity types, attributes, and attribute values for the data.
Entity and attribute overview:
Ecoregions for Central and South America are designed to be relatively consistent with the North America and United States frameworks.  They are hierarchical with Level I being the broadest classification and Level III being the most detailed.  Because of this hierarchy, Level III features include appropriate codes and names for Levels II and I and Level II retains Level I information.

Ecoregion Codes and Names:

	13. Temperate Sierras
		13.6 Central American Sierra Madre and Chiapas Highlands
			13.6.1 Northern Central American Highlands
			13.6.2 Central American Sierra Madre
			13.6.4 Altos de Chiapas con bosque mesoófilo

	14. Mexican Tropical Dry Forests
		14.4 Interior Depressions
			14.4.2 Chiapas Depression
			14.4.3 Motagua Valley

	15. Middle American Tropical Wet Forests
		15.1 Humid Gulf of Mexico Coastal Plains and Hills 
			15.1.4 Humid Gulf of Mexico and Southern Petén Hills
			15.1.5 Maya Mountains
		15.2 Yucatan Peninsula Plains and Hills
			15.2.1 Quintana Roo / Belizean Wet Coastal Lowland
			15.2.2 Yucatán Karst Plains 
			15.2.3 Central Yucatán / Petén Hills and Karst Plains
		15.6 Soconusco / Guatemalan Coastal Plain and Hills
			15.6.2 Soconusco / Guatemalan Coastal Plain
			15.6.3 Soconusco Hills / Guatemalan Piedmont
		15.7 Central American Isthmus
			15.7.1 Pacific Volcanic Lowlands
			15.7.2 Caribbean Coastal Plains and Hills
			15.7.3 Miskito Lowland Pine Savanna
			15.7.4 Guanacaste / Central Volcanic Uplands
			15.7.5 Talamanca and Panama Central Cordilleras
			15.7.6 Costa Rica-Panama Pacific Plains and Hills

	16. West Indies
		16.1 Bahamas
			16.1.1 Bahamas
		16.2 Greater Antilles
			16.2.1 Cuba
			16.2.2 Mountainous Greater Antilles
		16.3 Lesser Antilles
			16.3.1 Limestone Low Islands
	1		6.3.2 Volcanic High Islands

	17. Northern Andes
		17.1 Caribe / Pacific Lowland Plains and Hills
			17.1.1 Sinú / Magdalena Dry Plains
			17.1.2 Magdalena Wet Plains
			17.1.3 Maracaibo Lowlands 
			17.1.4 Guajira/Paraguaná Peninsulas
			17.1.5 Chichiriviche Coastal Plain
			17.1.6 Unare Plains 
			17.1.7 Pacific Plains and Hills
			17.1.8 Guayas-Tumbes-Piura Dry Hills
		17.2 Venezuelan Coastal Andes
			17.2.1 Segovia Highlands
			17.2.2 Central Coastal Cordillera
			17.2.3 Eastern Coastal Cordillera
		17.3 Northern Andean Highlands
			17.3.1 Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta
			17.3.2 Colombian / Venezuelan High Cordilleras 
			17.3.3 Paramo / Alto Andina
			17.3.4 Upper Magdalena Valley
			17.3.5 Upper Cauca Valley
			17.3.6 Pacific Western Cordillera Montane Forest
			17.3.7 Eastern Cordillera Montane Forest
			17.3.8 S. Ecuador / N. Peru Transitional High Andes

	18. Central Andes
		18.1 Central High Andes/Puna
			18.1.1 High Andes / Humid Puna
			18.1.2 Dry Puna / Puna de Atacama
			18.1.3 Southern Central Andes
		18.2 Altiplano
			18.2.1 Titicaca / Northern Altiplano
			18.2.2 Southern Arid Altiplano
		18.3 Yungas
			18.3.1 Northern Yungas 
			18.3.2 Southern Yungas
		18.4 Peruvian/Atacaman Deserts
			18.4.1 Northern Peruvian Desert
			18.4.2 Garua-Loma Desert
			18.4.3 Northern Chilean Desert
	1		8.4.4 Transitional Subdesert Matoral

	19. Southern Andes
    1	9.1 Mediterranean Chile
			19.1.1 Coastal Ranges
			19.1.2 Llano Central
		19.2 Valdivian Forested Hills and Mountains
			19.2.1 Valdivian Coastal Range 
			19.2.2 Central Depression
			19.2.3 Valdivian High Andes
		19.3 Fuegian Fiords and Forests
			19.3.1 Magellanic Moorland and Rainforest
			19.3.2 Fuegian High Andes / Ice Caps
		19.4 Subantarctic Islands
			19.4.1 Falklands / Islas Malvinas

	20. Amazonian-Orinocan Lowland
		20.1 Orinoco Llanos
			20.1.1 Piedmont 
			20.1.2 High Plains or Dissected Plains 
			20.1.3 Alluvial Overflow Plains / Wet Plains 
		20.2 Amazon Irregular Plains and Piedmont 
			20.2.1 Colombia Rock Mesa Amazon
			20.2.2 Napo / Putamayo Moist Forests
			20.2.3 Ucayali / Marañon Lowland
			20.2.4 Southwestern Amazonian Irregular Plains
			20.2.5 Llanos de Mojos / Beni Savanna
		20.3 Guianan Shield Moist Forests 
			20.3.1 Upper Rio Negro / Campinas area
			20.3.2 Boa Vista Depression / Rupununi Savanna
			20.3.3 Guianan Forested Plains and Hills
			20.3.4 Amapá / Roraima Plains and Tablelands
		20.4 Amazon and Coastal Lowlands
			20.4.1 Amazon Flat Plains
			20.4.2 Várzea / Igapó 
			20.4.3 Amazon Estuary and Coastal Savannas
			20.4.4 Guianan Coastal Lowland
		20.5 Brazilian Shield Moist Forests
			20.5.1 Gurupi Plains and Low Tablelands
			20.5.2 Amazon Upland Irregular Plains
			20.5.3 Mixed Forest Plains and Tablelands
			20.5.4 Upper Xingu Depression

	21. Eastern Highlands
		21.1 Guianan Highlands
			21.1.1 Guianan Uplands and Tepuis
			21.1.2 Roraima and Grand Savannas
			21.1.3 Suriname / Guyana Low Mountains
		21.2 Cerrados
			21.2.1 Northern Maranhão Plains
			21.2.2 Northern Piauí Plains
			21.2.3 Northeastern Cerrado
			21.2.4 Araguaia Depression
			21.2.5 Tocantins Hills and Tablelands
			21.2.6 Espinhaço / Diamantina Hills and Low Mountains
			21.2.7 Mato Grosso Savanna Tablelands
			21.2.8 Upper Paraguai / Guapore Plains and Hills
			21.2.9 Pantanal
			21.2.10 Chiquitos-Velasco Forested Hills and Plains
			21.2.11 Southern Cerrado Tablelands
		21.3 Caatinga
			21.3.1 Northeastern Caatinga
			21.3.2 Western Caatinga
		21.4 Atlantic Forests 
			21.4.1 Agreste / Caatinga Transition
			21.4.2 Brazilian Atlantic Coastal Forests
			21.4.3 Eastern Inland Atlantic Mixed Forests
			21.4.4 Western Inland Atlantic Mixed Forests
			21.4.5 Araucaria Tablelands

	22. Gran Chaco
		22.1 Western Dry Chaco
			22.1.1 Northern Dry Chaco
			22.1.2 Southern Dry Chaco
			22.1.3 Sierras of Cordoba and San Luis
			22.1.4 Pampa Seca / Espinal
		22.2 Humid Chaco
			22.2.1 Northern Humid Chaco
			22.2.2 Southern Humid Chaco

	23. Pampas
		23.1 Northern Rolling Pampas
			23.1.1 Campos / Northern Pampas
			23.1.2 Brazil / Uruguay Coastal Pampa
			23.1.3 Southern Uruguay Lowland
		23.2 Southern Flat Pampas
			23.2.1 La Plata / Uruguay Lowland 
			23.2.2 Inland Pampa
			23.2.3 Low Argentine Pampa
			23.2.4 Southern Pampa

	24. Monte-Patagonian
		24.1 Monte
			24.1.1 Monte
		24.2 Patagonian Tablelands
			24.2.1 Northern Patagonia
			24.2.2 Southern Patagonia 
			24.2.3 Magellan Grasslands

	25. Galapagos

			
Entity and attribute detailed citation:
Griffith, G.E., J.M. Omernik, and S.H. Azevedo. 1998. Ecological classification of the Western Hemisphere. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory, Corvallis, Oregon. 47p.
Direct spatial reference method: Vector
Attributes of sa_eco
Detailed descriptions of entity type, attributes, and attribute values for the data.
Description:
shapefile name
Source:
USEPA and USGS EROS Data Center
Attributes
FID
Definition:
Internal feature number.
Attribute domain range
RangeValue
Minimum0
Maximum3545
Attribute definition source:
ESRI
Shape
Definition:
Feature geometry.
Attribute values: Coordinates defining the features.
Attribute definition source:
ESRI
AREA
Definition:
remnant Area field from coverage
Attribute values: Positive real numbers that are automatically generated.
Attribute definition source:
ESRI
PERIMETER
Definition:
Remnant perimeter field from coverage.
Attribute values: Positive real numbers that are automatically generated.
Attribute definition source:
ESRI
SA_ECO_
Definition:
remnant identifier from coverage
Attribute values: Sequential unique whole numbers that are automatically generated.
Attribute definition source:
ESRI
SA_ECO_ID
Definition:
remnant identifier from coverage
Attribute values: Sequential unique whole numbers that are automatically generated.
Attribute definition source:
ESRI
LEVEL3
Definition:
Code for Level II Ecoregions of Central and South America
Attribute values: unique code
Attribute definition source:
USEPA/USGS EROS Data Center
LEVEL2
Definition:
Code for Level II Ecoregions of Central and South America
Attribute values: unique code
Attribute definition source:
USEPA/USGS EROS Data Center
LEVEL1
Definition:
Code for Level I Ecoregions of Central and South America
Attribute values: unique code
Attribute definition source:
USEPA/USGS EROS Data Center
Shape_Leng
Definition:
Length of feature
Attribute values: Positive real numbers that are automatically generated.
Attribute definition source:
ESRI
Shape_Area
Definition:
Area of feature in internal units squared.
Attribute values: Positive real numbers that are automatically generated.
Attribute definition source:
ESRI
SDTS Feature Description
Description of point and vector spatial objects in the data using the Spatial Data Transfer Standards (SDTS) terminology.
Spatial data transfer standard (SDTS) terms
Feature class
Type: GT-polygon composed of chains
Count: 3546
+ Data Quality and Accuracy Information
General
Information about the fidelity of relationships, data quality and accuracy tests, omissions, selection criteria, generalization, and definitions used to derive the data.
Logical consistency report:
Tests for integrity have not been performed.
Completeness report:
Features represented have not been tested for completeness
Positional Accuracy
Accuracy of the positional aspects of the data.
Horizontal accuracy report:
Data were collected using methods that have unknown accuracy (EPA National Geospatial Data Policy [NGDP] Accuracy Tier 10). For more information, please see EPA's NGDP at http://epa.gov/geospatial/policies.html)
+ Data Source and Process Information
Process Steps
Information about events, parameters, tolerances and techniques applied to construct or derive the data.
Process step information
Process Step 1
Process description:
Ecoregions delineated on 1:5,000,000 base maps are digitized.
Process date: 1998
Process Step 2
Process description:
Topology established, errors checked and repaired as needed.
Process date: 1998
Process Step 3
Process description:
Attributes added.
Process date: 1998
Process Step 4
Process description:
QA.
Process date: 1998
Process Step 5
Process description:
Coverage projected from Bipolar Oblique to Albers.
Process date: 2012
Process Step 6
Process description:
Coverage converted to file geodatase and shapefile.
Process date: 2012
Process Step 7
Process description:
Metadata.
Process date: 21012
+ Data Distribution Information
General
Description of the data known by the party from whom the data may be obtained, liability of party distributing data, and technical capabilities required to use the data.
Resource description:
Downloadable Data
Distribution liability:
Although these data have been processed successfully on a computer system at the Environmental Protection Agency, no warranty expressed or implied is made regarding the accuracy or utility of the data on any other system or for general or scientific purposes, nor shall the act of distribution constitute any such warranty. It is also strongly recommended that careful attention be paid to the contents of the metadata file associated with these data to evaluate data set limitations, restrictions or intended use. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency shall not be held liable for improper or incorrect use of the data described and/or contained herein.
Distribution Point of Contact
Contact information for the individual or organization distributing the data.
Person: Marc Weber
Organization: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory (NHEERL)
Position: GIS Analyst
Phone: (541) 754-4469
Email: weber.marc@epa.gov
Instructions:
http://www.epa.gov/nheerl/
Address type: mailing address
Address:
200 S.W. 35th Street
City: Corvallis
State or Province: OR
Postal code: 97333
+ Metadata Reference
Metadata Date
Dates associated with creating, updating and reviewing the metadata.
Last updated: 20120502
Future metadata review date: 20160502
Metadata Point of Contact
Contact information for the individual or organization responsible for the metadata information.
Person: Marc Weber
Organization: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory (NHEERL)
Position: GIS Analyst
Phone: (541) 754-4469
Email: weber.marc@epa.gov
Instructions:
http://www.epa.gov/nheerl/
Address type: mailing address
Address:
200 S.W. 35th Street
City: Corvallis
State or Province: OR
Postal code: 97333
Metadata Standards
Description of the metadata standard used to document the data and reference to any additional extended profiles to the standard used by the metadata producer.
Standard name: FGDC Content Standard for Digital Geospatial Metadata
Standard version: FGDC-STD-001-1998
FGDC Plus Metadata Stylesheet
Stylesheet: FGDC Plus Stylesheet
File name: FGDC Plus.xsl
Version: 2.3
Description: This metadata is displayed using the FGDC Plus Stylesheet, which is an XSL template that can be used with ArcGIS software to display metadata. It displays metadata elements defined in the Content Standard for Digital Geospatial Metadata (CSDGM) - aka FGDC Standard, the ESRI Profile of CSDGM, the Biological Data Profile of CSDGM, and the Shoreline Data Profile of CSDGM. CSDGM is the US Federal Metadata standard. The Federal Geographic Data Committee originally adopted the CSDGM in 1994 and revised it in 1998. According to Executive Order 12096 all Federal agencies are ordered to use this standard to document geospatial data created as of January, 1995. The standard is often referred to as the FGDC Metadata Standard and has been implemented beyond the federal level with State and local governments adopting the metadata standard as well. The Biological Data Profile broadens the application of the CSDGM so that it is more easily applied to biological data that are not explicitly geographic (laboratory results, field notes, specimen collections, research reports) but can be associated with a geographic location. Includes taxonomical vocabulary. The Shoreline Data Profile addresses variability in the definition and mapping of shorelines by providing a standardized set of terms and data elements required to support metadata for shoreline and coastal data sets. The FGDC Plus Stylesheet includes the Dublin Core Metadata Element Set. It supports W3C DOM compatible browsers such as IE7, IE6, Netscape 7, and Mozilla Firefox. It is in the public domain and may be freely used, modified, and redistributed. It is provided "AS-IS" without warranty or technical support.
Instructions: On the top of the page, click on the title of the dataset to toggle opening and closing of all metadata content sections or click section links listed horizontally below the title to open individual sections. Click on a section name (e.g. Description) to open and close section content. Within a section, click on a item name (Status, Key Words, etc.) to open and close individual content items. By default, the Citation information within the Description section is always open for display.
Download: FGDC Plus Stylesheet is available from the ArcScripts downloads at www.esri.com.