Harvesting vegetation on riparian buffers barely reduces water-quality benefits — ScienceDaily

Allowing farmers to harvest vegetation from their riparian buffers will not significantly impede the ability of those streamside tracts to protect water quality by capturing nutrients and sediment — and it will boost farmers’ willingness to establish buffers.

That is the conclusion of Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences researchers, who compared the impacts of six riparian buffer design scenarios over two, four-year crop rotations in two small central and southeastern Pennsylvania watersheds. Two of the buffer scenarios included the harvesting of switchgrass and swamp willow trees.

Allowing farmers to harvest vegetation from their riparian buffers and sell it for biofuels — not permitted under current Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, or CREP, federal regulations — would go a long way toward persuading farmers to establish riparian buffers, researchers contend. And farmers’ buy-in is badly needed in Pennsylvania, where hundreds of miles of new buffers are needed along streams emptying into

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long-term effects on tundra vegetation — ScienceDaily

Landslides have long-term effects on tundra vegetation, a new study shows. Conducting the study in North West Siberia, the researchers found that tundra vegetation regenerated rapidly after a major landslide event in 1989. Two decades later, differences in the vegetation of the landslide area and the areas surrounding it have evened out, but even after 30 years, the vegetation of the landslide area is nowhere close to the vegetation of the surrounding areas.

Several studies have reported changes in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) in Arctic regions. So far, remote sensing data that is used to calculate the NDVI hasn’t been able to discern, in detail, landscape level factors that have an effect on, e.g., greening.

“Landslides caused by the thawing of permafrost will become increasingly common in North West Siberia and elsewhere in the Arctic, too. These are caused by climate change and they also have an effect

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