- To provide information, methods, and guidelines to implement and evaluate ecosystem management concepts, practices, and effects on water, soil and forest resources.
- To improve knowledge, baseline data, and predictive methods that are required to evaluate effects of the atmospheric environment on forested watersheds in the southeastern U.S.
News & Events
The Southeast hosts an impressive network of forested wetlands. These wetlands improve water quality, reduce flooding, store excess carbon, and provide important habitat for wildlife. They are also particularly vulnerable to changes in climate and land use.
Forests provide the most stable and highest quality water supplies among all land uses. A report by the Southern Research Station of the USDA Forest Service quantifies the role of state and private forest lands (SPF) in providing drinking water supply across the southern United States.
A new study uses a USDA Forest Service modeling tool – the Water Supply Stress Index, or WaSSI, ecosystem services model – to explore the relationship between water use, river flows, and fish populations across the conterminous U.S. Brian Richter from the University of Virginia led the study. SRS researcher Peter Caldwell’s expertise with WaSSI was instrumental in relating water use to depletion of river flows.