The Lands & Waterways chapters highlight the environmental factors and natural resources found in the Coos estuary and its lower watersheds.

These chapters are broken into three components: Chapter Summary (which lists information sources, data gaps, and data limitations); Climate Change Summary (which discusses anticipated effects of climate-related changes associated with the chapter topic); and one or more Data Summaries (which uses all available data to describe status, trend and background information on each major sub-topic).

In addition to providing detailed status and trend information, Data Summary cover pages use a system of rudimentary evaluation symbols to provide a quick overall assessment of wellbeing (where appropriate). These symbols provide a quick assessment of status with use of color, and trend with use of character symbols and are explained as follows: