Australia: Our national stories
Australian Heritage Commission, 2003
ISBN 0 642 23561 9
5. Using the Wilderness Database
Useful information about wilderness conditions can be obtained simply by analysing patterns of variation in wilderness indicators or a total wilderness quality index. However, the production of maps of wilderness indicators or total wilderness quality is only one use of the wilderness database. Altering the primary wilderness database, manipulating wilderness indicators, and incorporating other relevant geographical information assists many wilderness planning and management objectives.
The fundamental descriptions of wilderness produced by the NWI are wilderness indicator values. These illustrate, in essentially quantitative terms, spatial variation in the environmental attributes that comprise wilderness quality. Simple aggregation of these values, after classification, weighting and the setting of minimum thresholds, provides an overall estimate of variation in wilderness quality across the survey region.
This can be further developed by associating either individual indicator or total wilderness quality values with other types of geographical information such as tenure, vegetation type, or land systems. Any geographical attribute which is considered relevant to the status of wilderness may be incorporated into these assessments.