Through advocacy, education, and organizing, SABP seeks permanent protection for Southern Appalachia's public lands as well as sustainable management of its private lands. Based in Asheville, NC, this project defends public land as a refuge for ancient forests and native wildife. Promoting the reintroduction of native wildlife that has been extirpated from the region (such as the red wolf) has also been a priority. When necessary, SABP is prepared to take legal action to protect critical habitat and assure full enforcement of conservation laws on public lands. In part through its bi-monthly journal, Wild Mountain Times, SABP educates the public about how forest fragmentation, chronic air pollution, and exotic pests and diseases threaten native forests. SABP also advocates for an end to corporate welfare policies that hurt our economy and natural heritage. For more information, contact SABP at (828) 258-2667 or email@example.com.
The mountain forests of the Southern Appalachians are a priceless living treasure. Rising in north Georgia and extending into Kentucky and Virginia, Southern Appalachia hosts the highest mountains and largest collection of public land in eastern North America. Mountain balds and spruce-fir forests crest the highest peaks. Ancient rock outcrops and highland bogs rest on the mountain slopes. Rainforests feed waterfalls which tumble into river gorges. Precious ancient forests cloak backcountry ridges and coves.
Walking through old growth forests in the Southern Appalachians, one may find as many tree species as all that occur in Europe, among them white oaks 400 years old and poplars 150 feet tall. Black bear hibernate in the heart of ancient, hollow trees. The forest floor is rich with ferns, mosses, and wildflowers. Bird songs call from nests high in the forest canopy. Southern Appalachia's public forests are a critical refuge for endangered wildlife and one of America's great ecological treasures. The public forests are also a refuge for the people who like to hike, camp, and fish in the Southern Appalachian mountains each year. They offer a sanctuary of solitude and sanity in an over-civilized country.
Industrial logging in the beginning of the 20th Century crippled Southern Appalachia's ancient forest communities, rendered many species extinct, and wounded the health of the land. Now, after decades of recovery, Southern Appalachia's forests are threatened once again
Each day airborne pollutants from coal-fired plants and automobiles poison the mountain air, killing trees and acidifying streams. Urban sprawl and second home construction swallow the forests and farms on private lands. Intensive logging, road construction, and strip mining ravage our public lands.
During the last 20 years, tens of thousands of acres of national forest have been logged, many of them replanted as pine plantations. Over 5000 miles of roads have been cut across the steepest mountainsides on our national forests. Millions of taxpayer's dollars have been thrown away to carry out money-losing timber sales. Multinational mining companies are targeting the public lands for large scale strip mining.
As a result of these threats, ecosystems are collapsing and species are being rendered extinct. The very survival of many creatures and the health of natural and human communities is in jeopardy.
For additional information about the Southern Appalachian Biodiversity Project and forest health in Southern Appalachia, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For internet resources about Southern Appalachian forests, visit
- The Hellbender Press is the Foundation for Global Sustainability's tabloid-sized periodical dedicated to monitoring and addressing social and environmental issues in the Upper Tennessee River Valley and Southern Appalachian Mountains through fair and factual reporting. It is published bimonthly and distributed free of charge. (If you own or work for a store, restaurant, libarary, or other place of public access and have space for distributing The Hellbender Press, please contact FGS <email@example.com>.
- The Southern Appalachian Man and the Biosphere (SAMAB) Program is a public/private partnership that focuses its attention on the Southern Appalachian Biosphere Reserve. The program encourages the utilization of ecosystem and adaptive management principles. SAMAB's vision is to foster a harmonious relationship between people and the Southern Appalachian environment. Its mission is to promote the environmental health and stewardship of natural, economic, and cultural resources in the Southern Appalachians. It encourages community-based solutions to critical regional issues through cooperation among partners, information gathering and sharing, integrated assessments, and demonstration projects.
- The Southern Appalachian Biodiversity Project (SABP) is a regional citizens organization dedicated to the defense and restoration of the native biodiversity of Southern Appalachia.
- The Southern Appalachian Forest Coalition (SAFC) is a collaboration of national, regional, state, and local conservation organizations from Alabama to Virginia, formed in 1994 in response to the threats facing the region's public forests.
- The Appalachian Forest Regional Center is one of four regional centers under the National Community Forestry Center , which is collaborating with the National Network of Forest Practitioners to help develop research initiatives and local information resources that facilitate community-based problem solving in natural resource-based communities.
- The American Chestnut Foundation (TACF) conducts and supports research on the restoration of the American Chestnut to Appalachian forests.
- Cherokee Forest Voices is an organization of volunteers interested in the conservation of the vast resources of the Cherokee National Forest as a wonderful, wild and natural place.
- The Southern Regional Extension Forestry (SREF) provides extensive information and links to natural resources websites throughout the southern United States. The Encyclopedia of Southern Appalachian Forest Ecosystems synthesizes literature from thousands of sources to provide resource managers, land owners, researchers, students, and the public easy access to research knowledge on the southern Appalachians. Presently the encyclopedia contains a wealth of information on the ecology and management of the mixed oak and mesophytic hardwood (yellow poplar) dominated forests, which account for about 63% of Southern Appalachia's forest lands. Other forest communities will be the focus of future additions.
- The Smoky Mountain Field School, founded in 1978 by the University of Tennessee in cooperation with Great Smoky Mountains National Park, provides expert field-based programs designed to explore the beauty and abundance of life in the forest.
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