Sarah Pearce's picture

Sarah Pearce

Geomorphologist
Clean Water Program
510-847-3976

Ms. Pearce received her B.S. in Geosciences in 1999 from Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas and her M.S. in Geomorphology from Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA in 2001. Her master's research focused on the hydraulic geometry of ephemeral streams as they interacted with blind thrust faults and fault-propagation-folds associated with the continued uplift of the San Bernardino Mountains, Southern California. Ms. Pearce joined SFEI in 2001 and is currently working with the Watershed Science Program. In the past 18 months she has carried out a number of projects focusing on fluvial geomorphic process in Bay Area streams and making interpretations of the data toward an understanding of the way beneficial uses such a salmonid habitat, bank stability, riparian function, flood control, water supply, and aesthetic value are influenced by land and water management in adjacent and upstream areas. Communication mechanisms for this policy and environmental management related scientific information have included direct interaction with environmental stewardship groups, development of high quality, peer-reviewed technical reports, and presentations at conferences and directly to local environmental managers.

Related Projects, News, and Events

EcoAtlas (Project)

California's EcoAtlas provides access to information for effective wetland management. EcoAtlas is a set of tools for generating, assembling, storing, visualizing, sharing, and reporting environmental data and information. The tools can be used individually or together, and they can be adjusted or tuned to meet the specific needs of environmental planners, regulators, managers, scientists, and educators. The maps and tools can be used to create a complete picture of aquatic resources in the landscape by integrating stream and wetland maps, restoration information, and monitoring results with land use, transportation, and other information important to the state’s wetlands.

California Rapid Assessment Method (CRAM) (Project)

CRAM is a standardized, scientifically defensible rapid assessment method for monitoring the ecological conditions of wetlands throughout California. Because it is standardized, one can compare ecological conditions of wetlands locally, regionally and statewide.

New data layers and Landscape Profile mode added to EcoAtlas (News)

New data layers and Landscape Profile mode have been added to EcoAtlas (ecoatlas.org), an online tool for visualizing the abundance, diversity, and condition of wetlands, along with the project activities that are affecting the landscape. Enhancements include:

Flood Control 2.0 Completed! (News)

SFEI and several agency partners recently completed a multi-year, EPA funded project called Flood Control 2.0. The goal of the project was to develop information that is useful for integrating habitat restoration into flood management at the Bay edge. Project outputs are now available at floodcontrol.sfei.org.

Santa Clara Valley Water District's Watershed Condition Assessments (2010 to 2017) (Project)

SFEI and the Santa Clara Valley Water District's Priority D-5 Project are assessing the distribution and abundance of wetlands, and the overall condition of streams in five major watersheds in Santa Clara County, CA by employing the District's Ecological Monitoring and Assessment Framework that includes BAARI and CRAM.

Flood Control 2.0 (Project)

Flood Control 2.0 is an ambitious regional effort aimed at helping restore stream and wetland habitats, water quality, and shoreline resilience around San Francisco Bay. The project leverages local resources from several forward-looking flood control agencies to redesign major flood control channels so that they provide both future flood conveyance and ecological benefit under a changing climate. This timely project will develop a set of innovative approaches for bringing environmental benefits and cost-savings to flood protection efforts at the mouths of creeks that drain to San Francisco Bay.

How Creeks Meet the Bay: Current Sediment Dynamics (News)

The transition zones between our watersheds and the Bay are often occupied by flood control channels that provide a variety of societal and environmental services but can require sediment removal to maintain flood conveyance capacity. The causes of sedimentation problems in these channels are often complex, driven in large part by a combination of high watershed sediment yield and excess tidal sediment accumulation due to decreased tidal scour.

Get on the curve: Habitat Development Curves help determine the performance of on-the-ground projects (News)

How do you know whether your project assessment, conducted by the California Rapid Assessment Method, reflects an improvement that is aligned with ecosystem goals? Habitat Development Curves (HDCs) help to visualize and measure the performance of on-the-ground projects relative to ecosystem goals.

CRAM Bar-Built Estuarine (BBE) module now available to expand the applicability of CRAM (News)

With funding from the State Coastal Conservancy, SFEI staff developed the eCRAM data entry forms for uploading BBE assessments into the CRAM database. Public assessments can be viewed on EcoAtlas' interactive map and downloaded using the CRAM filter tool.

Evaluation of CRAM performance for assessing wetland stress, small wetlands, and wetland habitat development (Project)

Caltrans funded this wetlands research to fill important gaps in knowledge about the ability of the California Rapid Assessment Method (CRAM) to assess small wetlands, wetlands stress, and the rate at which wetland restoration projects develop into mature habitats. Caltrans proposed specific tasks based on the research priorities provided by the CRAM Commitee of the statewide California Wetlands Monitoring Workgroup.