Voluntary Best Management Practices (BMPs) have been demonstrated to effectively limit impact of human disturbances to water quality and aquatic resources. However, there is a continuing need to enhance the body of information about BMP effectiveness for continual improvement.
Industry managers also need information on such topics as Total Maximum Daily Load allocations, wetland loss, management of riparian forests (e.g., streamside management zones [SMZ]), the fate of nutrients and chemicals, and relationships between forest harvesting and aquatic biological diversity.
Watersheds & Wetlands
Forest Water and Wetland Issue Support
Regulatory issues related to water quality and wetlands have the potential to constrain forest management and wood supplies. Examples include Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rules under the Clean Water Act, NPDES forest road permits, pesticide permits, and unachievable water quality criteria. Staff periodically monitor regulatory and scientific developments related…
Water quality considerations, including sediment delivery, are critical to understand in the context of forest management throughout the U.S. Sediment is the number one pollutant of rivers and streams in the U.S. and states recommend or require, the use of best management practices (BMPs) to reduce soil erosion and the potential delivery of sediment to waterbodies.
Ecological Responses to Riparian Forest Management
Riparian forests are strips of forestland adjacent to streams where management practices are modified or restricted to reduce transport of pollutants to waterbodies. Retention of riparian forests is critical since these forests filter surface water runoff, link subsurface water flow with the stream channel, and store sediment and nutrients.
Evaluating Remote Sensing Estimates of Forested Wetland Loss
A report by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) determined that wetlands in coastal watersheds in the Great Lakes and Atlantic and Gulf coasts experienced an average net decrease of 59,000 acres/yr during 1998 to 2004. Reports such as these…
The Mica Creek Experimental Watershed is a paired and nested watershed study in Shoshone County in northern Idaho. This long-term watershed study (1990 – current), which is evaluating effects of best management practices (BMPs) of roads, clear cut, and partial cut harvesting, has been largely supported and funded by PotlatchDeltic,…
Modeling Summer Streamflow Responses for Contemporary Landscapes
Understanding effects of forest management on hydrology has been a focus of research for decades, but most of this research focus has relied on understanding the immediate effects of harvest on water quantity and has only examined these effects at the smallest watershed scales. However, understanding dynamic hydrological responses to…
Comparison of Environmental Responses to Watershed Composition
Knowledge about the effects of forest harvest on overall composition is limited to the smallest watershed scale, primarily due to the limits of manipulating entire watersheds. Scaling up from headwater responses is not appropriate given well-documented differences in factors that affect ecosystem function that occur at different scales. Land ownership…
This interview discusses studies addressing effects of riparian buffers on stream temperatures and salmonid production in headwater streams of Western Oregon. Steve Cramer of Cramer Fish Sciences is interviewed.