Tennessee Develops Riparian Buffer Handbook

Thursday, December 3, 2015

The Tennessee Department of Agriculture, Division of Forestry (TDF) recently released the Urban Riparian Buffer Handbook, a Practical Guide to Establishing Healthy Streamside Buffers. 

Healthy creeks, streams and rivers are dependent on healthy forested stream banks, often referred to as riparian buffers. These forested riparian buffers offer many benefits not only to individual landowner’s property, but also to the overall health of the entire watershed and everyone living downstream. These buffers can help stabilize eroding stream banks, filter out sediments and chemicals before they reach the waterway, help recharge groundwater, preserve or improve wildlife and aquatic habitat, and add scenic and economic value to the land.

Buffers can also help to reduce flooding by absorbing high velocity stream flows, and can help regulate the water temperature of streams.

To help raise public the awareness of the importance of riparian buffers and to help restore degraded buffers in a target area, in 2012 the Tennessee Department of Agriculture, Division of Forestry (TDF) initiated a pilot program through a grant from the USDA Forest Service to help restore riparian buffers along streams and waterways in eight priority watersheds located in three counties in middle Tennessee. These watersheds were identified in the Tennessee's Forest Action Plan as being Urban Forestry Priority Areas and/or as not having adequate riparian forest cover. 

Read more about the program > >

Download the Tennessee Urban Riparian Buffer Handbook > >