BEACONs partnered with the Northwest Boreal Partnership (formerly known as Northwest Boreal Landscape Conservation Cooperative or NWBLCC) to identify ecological benchmarks to advance landscape conservation across a large, dynamic region of Canada and Alaska. Support for this work was provided by the NWB Partnership, Wilburforce Foundation, University of Alberta, and Yukon Research Centre.

Ecological benchmarks provide anchors for landscape conservation by establishing the foundation for a robust and resilient protected areas network, and reference conditions for identifying sustainable land management practices. They support implementation of active adaptive management by serving as controls for human activities designed to enhance understanding of the response of biodiversity and other ecosystem values to management choices. Benchmark options have been identified for ecoregions intersecting the Northwest Boreal planning region, which includes Alaska, Yukon, Northwest Territories, and British Columbia (Figure 1).

Figure 1. Ecoregions of the NWB planning region.

The products from the NWB LCC Benchmark Analysis are now available at


One-page description of research and associated products - PDF
WMI Outdoor News Bulletin - click here


Conserving Large Landscapes: Science to Support Pro-Active Conservation Planning - YouTube


Ecological Benchmarks to Support Landscape Conservation Design in the NWBLCC

Benchmark Report - PDF
Ecoregion Reports - ZIP

Focal Species and the Design and Selection of Ecological Benchmarks

Focal Species Report - PDF
Appendix A - Bibliography of Management Plans - PDF
Appendix B - Conservation Goals and Targets - XLSX
Appendix C - Experts Consulted - PDF
Appendix D - Inventory of Focal Species Datasets - XLSX

Estimating Minimum Dynamic Reserves

MDR Analysis Report - PDF

Interactive Website

Results can be explored via interactive maps and tables at


Shapefiles of benchmark networks and supporting datasets, as well as ranking tables, are available for download at