Next Article in Journal
The Diversification Benefits of Including Carbon Assets in Financial Portfolios
Next Article in Special Issue
The Inclusion of Forest Hydrological Services in the Sustainable Development Strategy of South Korea
Previous Article in Journal
Analysis of Factors Contributing to Changes in Energy Consumption in Tangshan City between 2007 and 2012
Article Menu
Issue 3 (March) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Sustainability 2017, 9(3), 447; doi:10.3390/su9030447

Coastal Forests and Groundwater: Using Case Studies to Understand the Effects of Drivers and Stressors for Resource Management

1
Department of Geology and Environmental Geosciences, College of Charleston, 66 George Street, Charleston, SC 29424, USA
2
U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service, Center for Forested Wetlands Research, Cordesville, SC 29434, USA
3
South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, Columbia, SC 29201, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Marc A. Rosen
Received: 28 November 2016 / Revised: 27 February 2017 / Accepted: 15 March 2017 / Published: 18 March 2017
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [4025 KB, uploaded 20 March 2017]   |  

Abstract

Forests are receiving more attention for the ecosystem goods and services they provide and the potential change agents that may affect forest health and productivity. Highlighting case examples from coastal forests in South Carolina, USA, we describe groundwater processes with respect to stressors and potential responses of a wetland-rich forested landscape, the roles that this area has served, and the need for water resource data to inform forest management decisions. Forested lands in the southeastern U.S. coastal plain provide a rich set of goods and services for the region, and in one case, the Francis Marion National Forest acts as a buffer to urbanization from the surrounding Charleston metropolitan area. Information from two decades of studies in the forested watersheds there may inform scientists and managers in other coastal forested systems. The common hydrological theme in this region, which has a higher average annual rainfall (1370 mm) than the annual potential evapotranspiration (PET = 1135 mm), is a shallow (<3 m) water table condition that supports a large range of natural wetlands and also creates management challenges across the region. Modest changes in the position of the water table can lead to either groundwater flooding and concomitant management challenges for forest services, or ecosystem stresses related to dry conditions in wetlands during times of below-normal precipitation or due to groundwater withdrawal. Development pressures have also stressed forest resources through the extraction of materials such as timber and sand mining, and the conversion to housing construction materials. These areas are also targeted for land development, to meet housing demands. In this paper, we discuss the role of groundwater in coastal forests and highlight opportunities for collaborative studies to better inform forest resource management. View Full-Text
Keywords: pine forests; wetland hydrology; water table; aquifer; coastal plain; francis marion national forest; turkey creek watershed pine forests; wetland hydrology; water table; aquifer; coastal plain; francis marion national forest; turkey creek watershed
Figures

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Callahan, T.J.; Amatya, D.M.; Stone, P.A. Coastal Forests and Groundwater: Using Case Studies to Understand the Effects of Drivers and Stressors for Resource Management. Sustainability 2017, 9, 447.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Sustainability EISSN 2071-1050 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top