This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Growth Machine Meets Conservation: A Stakeholder Analysis of the Black Warrior and Cahaba River Watersheds




Carter-North, John

Type of Degree



Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology


Results from a stakeholder analysis of two central-Alabama watersheds—-the Black Warrior River watershed and Cahaba River watershed—-are presented in this thesis. Stakeholder opinions, perspectives, concerns, interests and dynamics regarding watershed issues were documented through the use of semi-structured interviews. Stakeholder groups targeted include business and industry representatives, developers, elected officials and government entities, environmental/watershed advocacy and conservation organization representatives, and non-industrial private forest owners. While much of the area encompassing both watersheds remains largely rural in makeup, portions of both watersheds located in and around Birmingham are becoming highly urbanized and as such are experiencing increased threats from non-point source pollution largely associated with accelerated commercial and residential land development. This thesis documents the major threats and issues currently facing the tow watersheds; who the primary stakeholders are regarding these watershed issues; stakeholder opinions, perspectives, concerns, interests and dynamics relating to these issues; and an examination of stakeholder opinions and acceptability of existing or proposed watershed protection policies and/or programs.