Fact Sheets

Forestry BMPs Protect Aquatic Biodiversity in Southern Appalachian Critical Biodiversity Area

The Clean Water Act established national goals and a legal framework for protecting the physical, chemical, and biological integrity of water bodies. Forestry best management practices (BMPs) have been developed and approved by states as the primary mechanism for controlling sediment, nutrients, and chemical delivery to streams during forest management. Forestry BMPs refer to a practice or combination of practices that have been determined to be the most effective and practicable means of controlling nonpoint source pollutants (e.g., sediment and forest chemicals) during and after silvicultural activities. State agencies have the lead role in collaborating with forest landowners and workers to implement BMPs to protect water quality during forest management activities.

The Southern Appalachian Critical Biodiversity Area (SACBA) has been identified as an area of specified risk under the Forest Stewardship Council National Risk Assessment for the Conterminous United States of America (FSC-NRA-USA V1-0). Options to mitigate risk in the SACBA include using BMPs that contribute to conservation of aquatic biodiversity. This factsheet highlights the ability of BMPs to conserve aquatic biodiversity within the SACBA.