Northern Research Station
11 Campus Blvd., Suite 200
Newtown Square, PA 19073
(610) 557-4132 TTY/TDD
Title: Efficiencies of forestry best management practices for reducing sediment and nutrient losses in the eastern United States
Author: Edwards, Pamela; Williard, Karl W.J.
Publication: Journal of Forestry. July/August: 245-249.
Key Words: harvesting, nitrogen, paired watersheds, phosphorus, water quality
Abstract: Quantifying the effects of forestry best management practices (BMPs) on sediment and nutrient loads is a critical need. Through an exhaustive literature search, three paired forested watershed studies in the eastern United States were found that permitted the calculation of BMP efficiencies--the percent reduction in sediment or nutrients achieved by BMPs. For sediment, BMP efficiencies ranged from 53 to 94% during harvest and up to 1 year after harvesting. For nutrients, BMP efficiencies were higher for total nitrogen (60-80%) and phosphorus (85-86%), which included particulate and sediment-bound forms, than for nitrate-nitrogen (12%), which occurs primarily in the dissolved phase. Results indicate forestry BMPs can significantly reduce sediment and nutrient loads; however, BMPs appear to be more effective at reducing pollutants associated with surface runoff than with subsurface flow.
This document is in PDF format. You can obtain a free PDF reader from Adobe.
Forest Service Home | USDA.gov | recreation.gov