Terrestrial Protected Areas Representation by Biogeoclimatic Unit

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Published by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy - BC Parks - Provincial Services
Licensed under Open Government Licence - British Columbia

Biogeoclimatic Ecosystem Classification (BEC) subzone\variant\phase boundaries with percent protected, number of overlapping protected areas and other attributes added as a result of geoprocessing in the Protected Area System Overview (PASO) application. Protected area and park representation by BEC unit provides a small scale ecosystem classification context for natural resource planning processes such as; management plans, land use zoning, environmental risk assessment, landscape analysis, habitat supply, and management of high priority species. Biogeoclimatic subzones are the basic unit of the BEC system. Subzones are grouped into biogeoclimatic zones to create more generalized units, and subdivided into biogeoclimatic variants and phases to create more specific or climatically homogeneous units. For more information on the BEC system see: http://www.for.gov.bc.ca/hre/becweb/. For important warnings about using this data for spatial analysis see the Data Quality section of the metadata

Data and Resources

Dataset Extent

Latitude: 48.0° to 60.0°
Longitude: -139.5° to -113.5°

Additional Information


Protected area representation analysis assists resource managers to assess the relative importance of maintaining the ecosystem at a specific site based on how much similar ecosystem in other locations is already protected from substantial alteration by humans.

Contact Information

NameSharilynn Wardrop (pointOfContact)
OrganizationMinistry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy
Sub-OrganizationBC Parks - Provincial Services

Access & Security

Who can view this dataset? Public
Who can download this dataset?Public

Metadata Information

Record Published 2011-03-09
Record Last Modified 2021-02-04
Resource Status onGoing

Object Description


Comments: PASO PCT BGC CODE PRTCTD SVW combines provincial biogeoclimatic area geometry with provincial report totals. This provides a high level summary of biogeoclimatic variant representation found within and outside the protected areas system.

Column Name Short Name Data Type Data Precision Comments
BG_CODE BG_CODE VARCHAR2 9 BG CODE is a code for Biogeoclimatic Ecosystem Classification variants. The Biogeoclimatic Ecosystem Classification system divides the province into 16 different biogeoclimatic zones (BGC Zones), each with different climate and vegetation. BGC Zones are then divided into smaller units called subzones and variants (BGC Code) based on further differences in climate, soils and vegetation. Subzone names and variants are appreviated as letter codes.
BCAREAPR BCAREAPR NUMBER 38 BCAREAPR describes how many hectares of a particular BGC variant there are in the entire provincial land base.
PRPA_BC PRPA_BC NUMBER 38 PRPA BC describes how many hectares of a particular BGC Code are protected in the province.
NUMPA_BC NUMPA_BC NUMBER 38 NUMPA BC describes how many protected areas exist in this BGC Code. This number will be the same for all protected areas within this BGC Code.
PCTBCPR PCTBCPR NUMBER 38 PCTBCPR describes what percent of a particular BGC Code is protected in the province by all protected areas combined.
PCTPPABC PCTPPABC NUMBER 38 PCTPPABC describes what percent of the entire protected areas system is made up of a particular BGC Code, i.e. this gives you provincial representation of the BGC Code for all protected areas.
FEATURE_CLASS_SKEY FTRCLS_KEY NUMBER 10 Feature Class Skey is the unique key assigned to a Feature Class by the Ministry of Forests. The Feature Class Skey value for Biogeoclimatic Polygon is 435.
ZONE ZONE VARCHAR2 12 ZONE is a code uniquely identifying a Biogeoclimatic Zone of interest to the government ministry responsible for forestry.
SUBZONE SUBZONE VARCHAR2 9 Subzones are not unique. They are only meaningful in conjunction with a Zone.
VARIANT VARIANT VARCHAR2 3 Variant is a one digit number used to denote a division of a specific biogeoclimatic subzone; A geographic area with a more specific regional climate. A variant has a specific pattern of vegetation and soils. Variants are only meaningful within a Zone
PHASE PHASE VARCHAR2 3 PHASE is a one character code used to denote an atypical area, resulting from local relief, in the regional climate of the subzones and variants. Phases are not unique. They only have meaning in combination with a specific Zone, Subzone and Variant.
NATURAL_DISTURBANCE NATDISTTYP VARCHAR2 12 NATUAL DISTURBANCE is the Natural Disturbance of interest to the government ministry responsible for forestry. A code used to designate a period process or event such as insect outbreaks, fire, disease, flooding, windstorms and avalanches that cause ecosystem change and renewal. The Code values range from 1-5 inclusive.
MAP_LABEL MAP_LABEL VARCHAR2 27 MAP LABEL is a compact concatenation of the BEC attributes Zone, Subzone, Variant and Phase to create a biogeoclimatic label suitable for map labelling. This label may not include spaces, except as a spacer when a varient is not specified and a phase is specified. This label is generated by concatenating trimmed zone, subzone, varient, phase where nulls are the empty string except in the case outlined above. Unlike the BGC LABEL, the MAP LABEL varies in length from 4 to 9 characters.
ZONE_NAME ZONE_NAME VARCHAR2 105 ZONE NAME is a descriptive name given to a large geographic area having similar patterns of energy flow, vegetation, and soils as a result of a broad, homogeneous macroclimate. Zone names describe the major vegetation contained within the zone.
SUBZONE_NAME SUBZONE_NM VARCHAR2 105 SUBZONE NAME is a descriptive name given to a division of the biogeoclimatic zone. Subzone names define the normal regional climate for the division of a biogeoclimatic zone.
VARIANT_NAME VARIANT_NM VARCHAR2 60 VARIANT NAME is a descriptive name given to a division of the biogeoclimatic subzone. Variant names usualy denote a location within the biogeoclimatic subzone e.g. Eastern or Okanagan areas within a subzone.
PHASE_NAME PHASE_NAME VARCHAR2 45 PHASE NAME is a descriptive name given to an atypical area, resulting from local relief, in the regional climate of the subzones and variants. Phases may denote a different type of vegetation(e.g grassland within a Douglas Fir subzone), a difference in c
NATURAL_DISTURBANCE_NAME NDT_NAME VARCHAR2 360 NATURAL DISTRUBANCE NAME is a full description of the Natural Disturbance.
FEATURE_AREA FEAT_AREA NUMBER 38 FEATURE AREA is the area in square meters. This value is calculated by FME during the data load; this area may contain more precision than is appropriate for the particular geometry.
FEATURE_LENGTH FTR_LNGTH NUMBER 38 FEATURE LENGTH is the length in meters. This value is calculated by FME during the data load; this length may contain more precision than is appropriate for the particular geometry.
FEATURE_AREA_SQM AREA_SQM NUMBER 19 FEATURE_AREA_SQM is the system calculated area of a two-dimensional polygon in square meters.
FEATURE_LENGTH_M FEAT_LEN NUMBER 19 EATURE_LENGTH_M is the system calculated length or perimeter of a geometry in meters.
GEOMETRY GEOMETRY SDO_GEOMETRY 64 GEOMETRY is the Oracle Spatial SDO Geometry representation of a BIOGEOCLIMATIC POLY.
OBJECTID OBJECTID NUMBER 38 OBJECT ID is a surrogate key which is not persisted between versions. For a persistent business reference, refer to the Zone, SubZone, Variant and Phase located within the BIOGEOCLIMATIC CATALOGUE. Please note, there may be many polygons for each Zone, SubZone, Variant, Phase combination.
SE_ANNO_CAD_DATA BLOB 4000 SE_ANNO_CAD_DATA is a binary column used by spatial tools to store annotation, curve features and CAD data when using the SDO_GEOMETRY storage data type.