Managing growth and land use in our cities and towns is one of the greatest challenges facing New Hampshire today. On Monday, April 17 at Plymouth State University, Dan Sundquist, research director at the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests (SPNHF), will share the results of a SPNHF report on population growth, land development and grassroots conservation in the Granite State, and how these trends affect our state’s water supplies, wildlife habitats, agricultural lands and forests. “New Hampshire’s Changing Landscape: Population Growth, Land Use Conversion and Resource Fragmentation in the Granite State” is sponsored by PSU’s Center for the Environment and the Office of the President.
Sundquist’s report utilizes demographic data and Geographic Information System (GIS) research tools to show how rapid population growth and land development are affecting the state’s landscape and the character of New Hampshire communities. During his April 17 talk, Sundquist will focus on recent growth in central New Hampshire, including the Plymouth region. He will also address the ways in which some New Hampshire communities are meeting their land conservation goals through grassroots efforts.
Research like Sundquist’s is important to consider when making policy decisions about land use, conservation and other environmental issues, according to Steve Kahl, the director of the Center for the Environment.
“The Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests’ work on the changes in demographics and land use in New Hampshire is important as we think about the future of the state,” says Kahl. “Dan’s presentation will help us understand these changes.”
Sundquist has worked for SPNHF for 11 years. During his five years as research director, he has conducted research and mapping of critical water supply lands in New Hampshire; population growth, land use conversion and resource fragmentation in the state; and the status of the economic land base for forestry. His most recent project work is focused on regional-scale strategic conservation planning in the state’s southern region. He holds a BLA degree in landscape architecture from the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and an MSc degree in education from Syracuse University. Before joining SPNHF, he spent 25 years working in environmental planning, facility siting studies and impact assessment project work, with an emphasis on natural resources.
The Center for the Environment (CFE) at PSU is a collaborative effort between Plymouth State University academic departments, government agencies and regional nonprofit organizations. Established in 2004, the goal of the Center for the Environment is to address the science, policies, culture and economics of the natural environment in northern New England through research, education and collaboration.
“New Hampshire’s Changing Landscape” will be held April 17 at 7 p.m. in Rm. 144 of the Boyd Science Center at Plymouth State University. The talk is free and open to the public. For more information about this and other upcoming CFE events, please visit PSU’s Center for the Environment Web site, www.plymouth.edu/cfe
Plymouth State University (PSU) is a regional comprehensive university offering a rich, student-focused learning environment for both undergraduate and graduate students. PSU offers 42 majors and 62 minors in programs that include education, business, humanities, arts, and natural and social sciences. The College of Graduate Studies offers coursework that promotes research, best practices and reflection in locations on- and off-campus as well as online. For non-traditional students, PSU’s Frost School of Continuing and Professional Studies offers working professionals opportunities to pursue an undergraduate degree by attending classes in the evenings, weekends and online. Located in a beautiful New England setting, Plymouth State University has been recognized as one of the “Best in the Northeast” by The Princeton Review.