Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

America’s public forests landlocked by sea of development

08.08.2005


America’s national forests are beginning to resemble "islands" of green wilderness, increasingly trapped by an expanding sea of new houses, a forestry researcher will report today at the 90th annual Ecological Society of America (ESA) meeting in Montreal, Canada.



The widening circle of development around forests such as the Cleveland National Forest in Southern California is serving to block natural corridors, or wild "highways" that enable plants and wildlife to move easily between nearby forests, says Volker Radeloff, a forestry professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Radeloff analyzed government census data on housing increases in and near all U.S. national forests between 1950 and 2000.

"(In an isolated state), a forest cannot function as well for biodiversity," says Radeloff, who conducted his analysis in collaboration with UW-Madison graduate students and the North Central Research Station of the United States Forest Service.


Radeloff’s findings also highlight significant growth within the forests themselves. Between 1950 and 2000, the number of housing units within national forest boundaries increased from 500,000 to 1.5 million, an increase Radeloff largely attributes to inholdings, or parcels of forest land owned by private citizens.

In the Eastern U.S., most land was settled before national forests were established in the late 1800s. As a result, private landowners hold up to 46 percent of the land within forest administrative boundaries. Nationwide, inholders own about 17 percent of all national forest lands, Radeloff says.

As more and more people desire to live with wilderness in their backyard, Radeloff says, forests may just be getting "loved to death."

"People think of a national forest as a place they can be in nature without seeing anyone else or where they could see a wolf," says Radeloff. If trends continue, he adds, these solitary moments and discoveries will be more and more difficult to experience.

Housing in and around forests not only affects biodiversity, it impacts hydrology cycles and accelerates the spread of invasive species. Wildfires and animal-human conflicts are added risks. "It is possible that the national forests may not suffice for some endangered species," says Radeloff.

Radeloff is not advocating a moratorium on building rural homes. "We are hoping to generate a broader discussion on how housing growth should occur," says Radeloff. "We need to decide areas where we want growth and other areas where we don’t want growth to occur."

When the 2010 government census data becomes available, Radeloff plans to repeat his analysis, providing updated housing growth information for citizens, governments and other researchers involved in land use planning.

"Historic trends are the best indication of what will happen in the future," says Radeloff. "We hope that this data will be used to start discussions on future development in and near national forests."

Volker Radeloff | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.wisc.edu

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Alkaline soil, sensible sensor
03.08.2017 | American Society of Agronomy

nachricht New 3-D model predicts best planting practices for farmers
26.06.2017 | Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A Map of the Cell’s Power Station

18.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form

18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet

18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>