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Understanding Karst Management Objectives

What is the main purpose of the Karst Management Handbook?

To integrate the protection of karst systems and individual karst features with sustainable forest practices. The primary focus is to manage surface and subsurface karst resources by applying appropriate forest management practices on the surface karst environment.

What are the challenges of karst management?

The complex and three-dimensional nature of karst presents unique challenges to land management. A specific challenge is to manage the potential for karst hydrological systems to transport water, nutrients, soil, and pollutants into and through underground environments.

What are the management objectives of the Karst Management Handbook?

To promote sustainable forest practices on karst landscapes and achieve the following objectives, while minimizing impacts to timber supply and operational costs:

  1. Maintain the ability of karst landscapes to regenerate healthy and productive forests after harvesting
  2. Maintain the surface and subsurface habitats of karst ecosystems to ensure biodiversity
  3. Maintain the natural flows and water quality of karst hydrologic systems
  4. Maintain the natural rates of air exchange between the surface and subsurface
  5. Protect significant surface karst features (e.g., sinkholes, sinking streams, springs, cave entrances) and subsurface karst resources (e.g., caves, underground streams, subterranean fauna)
  6. Provide recreational opportunities where appropriate.

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