Design of the southern forest futures projectThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
The South has a unique human and landscape history and forests that reflect many episodes of change. Spanning the 13 States from Virginia to Texas, the South still contains a widely diverse complement of physical, economic, and ecological conditions; where forests and other native habitats play an important role not only in supporting diversity of native plants and animals but also in providing economic, aesthetic, and cultural values for its residents. Perhaps more so than in any other region of the United States, southern forests continue to change in response to direct human uses and to changes in the physical and biological environment, raising important questions about their potential future. Because these and other forces will dictate the long term sustainability of forest resources, it is important to scientifically assess their consequences so that society can make informed policy and management decisions.