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Riparian buffer width, vegetative cover, and nitrogen removal effectiveness: A review

The goal of this report is to synthesize the existing scientific literature on the effectiveness of riparian buffers to improve water quality through their inherent ability to process and remove excess anthropogenic nitrogen from surface and ground waters. Due to this ability, riparian buffers often are employed as an environmental management tool by resource management agencies. Despite significant research effort toward understanding the ecological functions of riparian buffers, there remains no consensus for what constitutes optimal riparian buffer design or proper buffer width to achieve maximum nitrogen removal effectiveness. This report does not provide a one-size-fits- all recommendation for such a design or width but rather attempts to identify generalizations and trends extracted from published literature that will aid managers in making decisions about establishing, maintaining, or restoring riparian buffers in watersheds of concern. (EPA, 2006)

News notes are courtesy of Southern Forests Network News Notes
www.southernsustainableforests.org

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