About the Data Basin Protected Areas Center

The Data Basin Protected Areas Center (PAC) is a centralized location for critical spatial data on the status of global land and water protection. The PAC is a forum that allows users to explore, share and download resources on protected areas.

Why was the PAC created?

The PAC was built to address the need for a centralized web-location to publish and disseminate critical protected areas data in concert with mapping and analysis tools.  All published datasets within the system are required to have supporting metadata documentation that includes detailed information about the data, so that others can easily use and understand the information.  The social network style environment gives our users unique opportunities to  work  in collaboration to address the worlds pressing environmental issues.

What types of data and information are on the PAC?

Protected Areas data on the PAC are characterized into two sections, US protected areas and global protected areas.

The three types of U.S. protected areas (fee lands, conservation restriction/easement, marine) are represented as individual databases:

  • PAD-US (CBI Edition), is a database that portrays the United States protected fee lands with a standardized spatial geometry with valuable attribution on land ownership, management designations, and conservation status (using national GAP and International IUCN coding systems)
  • National Conservation Easement Database (NCED), is a collaborative venture to compile a national database of conservation easements that includes both spatial and tabular information from land trusts and public agencies into a single, up-to-date, sustainable, GIS compatible layer
  • Marine Protected Areas (MPA) Inventory, is a comprehensive database inventory of geospatial boundary information (in polygon format) and classification attributes of marine protected areas in the United States that seek to define the conservation objectives, protection level, governance and related management criteria for all sites in the database
Who is using the PAC?

Conservation planners, resources managers, academics, researchers and individuals interested in protected areas information are using the PAC to address important conservation and resource related issues (e.g., mapping, planning, analyses, and problem-solving) pertaining to climate change adaptation, green energy development, infrastructure planning, and wildlife connectivity.

How can I contribute and/or download data in the PAC?

PAC contributors come from institutions, universities, research groups and individuals. PAC data contributors provide high quality datasets as they become available. We require contributors to add metadata to the uploaded datasets to ensure that they are easily understood and cited. Contact Kai Henifin (khenifin@consbio.org) to contribute datasets.

Public datasets with the PAC can be downloaded from the Data Basin platform as a .zip (Zip archives are collections of files which an be used on all major platforms) or .lpk (A layer package includes all data and information related to an ArcGIS layer) directly to a local computer. Users who download data from the Data Basin PAC must abide by the Data Basin Terms of Use and any use constraints identified by the original data creator, see file metadata from this information.