Volume 9, Issue 2 - May/June 2016
Water Planning for the South in the New Fire Age
Water resources in southeastern forests are stressed from urban sprawl, increased water usage, climate variability, and, increasingly, wildland fire. Last year, 2015, was a record year for wildland fire with more than 10 million acres burned in the U.S. Many research projects currently focus on sustaining forest ecological functions and forests’ ability to supply water for future generations, including a Joint Fire Science Program-funded study on the effects of wildland and prescribed fires on water quantity across the landscape. Eastern Threat Center research hydrologists Ge Sun and Dennis Hallema, who have been conducting this study since 2014, recently presented an invited seminar on their results to fellow researchers at the Joseph W. Jones Ecological Research Center in southwestern Georgia, where the Flint River has experienced profound effects of water stress due to increasing drought and irrigation demands for agriculture. Since the 1970s, water yields have declined rapidly in the region, resulting in lower streamflow in the Lower Flint River Basin. Read more in CompassLive...