The ALCES product suite (Integrator, Municipality, Wildlife Manager, Optimizer, Mapper) are fast, powerful, and user-friendly. These products were developed by the ALCES Group as strategic-level simulation tools intended for use by progressive resource managers and planners.
The primary purpose of the ALCES Tool Kit is to facilitate "Integrated Resource Management", which has been defined by Alberta Environment (June 2000) as:
"an interdisciplinary and comprehensive approach to decision-making for natural resource management. This approach integrates decisions, legislation, policies, programs and activities across sectors to gain the best overall long-term benefits for society and to minimize conflicts. It recognizes that the use of a resource for one purpose can affect both the use of that resource for other purposes and the management and use of other resources".
An important objective of ALCES is to encourage diverse stakeholders to gather together and explore the economic, ecological, and social consequences of different landuse trajectories on defined landscapes. These simulations need to run quickly and must be accurate at a strategic level. As stakeholders run the ALCES simulators (Integrator, Municipality, Wildlife Manager) into the future (a 100 year run takes ~50 seconds) they can quickly appreciate the range of socio-economic and ecological outcomes of different landuse options and move toward a suite of landuses that optimize societal goals.
Common requests of stakeholders using the ALCES tool kit include the ability to:
· forecast transformations of landscapes subjected to single or multiple human landuse practices and to various natural disturbance regimes
· track flows of natural resources (water, fiber, hydrocarbons, ores, wildlife, crops, livestock, carbon) and identify issues relating to sustainability of flows of natural resources
· track employment, expenditures, royalties and indirect economic benefits associated with flows of landuse resources (timber, hydrocarbon, ore, livestock, water, electricity) occurring on landscapes.
· define trade-offs that exist between landuse practices and environmental resources
· seek mitigation strategies that minimize adverse risk to ecological and economic goals