The links listed below contain information that may be of use in dealing with caves, cave management,
cave monitoring, cave preserves-development or public education. Throughout the web site we may refer to
documents listed on this page. On the national level, the Texas Cave Conservancy works with the Karst
Partnership Building Forum of the National Speleological Society. This group was formed to assist
cave-owners, city- planners, developers and environmental companies deal with their cave related problems.
Partnership Building Forum
National Speleological Society Conservation Committee
Excerpt from the NSS Conservation Policy:
"Caves have unique scientific, recreational, and scenic values.
Both carelessness and intentional vandalism endanger these values.
These values, once gone, can not be recovered.
The responsibility for protecting caves must be formed by those who study and enjoy."
Guided by the NSS Conservation Policy, the following goals were developed at the first meeting of the
Partnership Building Forum (PBF) held at the NSS National Convention in Bellingham, Washington on
August 11, 2006. In attendance were: Merideth Hildreth (PBF Coordinator), Val Hildreth-Werker and
Jim Werker (Co-Chairs NSS Conservation Committee), Steve Ormeroid (NSS Administrative Vice President),
Kriste Lindberg (NSS Environmental Education Committee Chair),
John E. Pearson (Conservation Grants / Save the Caves Coordinator, NSS Conservation Committee),
Barbara Moss (NSS Environmental Education Committee), Gary Moss (NSS Board Member),
Justin Epps (Cave Softly, NSS Conservation Committee), Katharina Dittmar (NSS Biology Section),
Mike Walsh (Texas Cave Conservancy), and
Joey Fagan (Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Karst Program).
Through collaborative efforts within the NSS, the Partnership Building Forum coordinates and leverages the
Society's resources to network and partner with land use planners, land managers, and land developers to
further the NSS mission to protect cave and karst systems.
Goals of the Partnership Building Forum:
Through the Partnership Building Forum (PBF), the NSS promotes itself as a resource to local decision-makers,
planners, and developers when cave and karst land use issues and decisions arise.
The PBF interfaces with land use and environmental planners in the public and private sectors, regional
planning organizations, and local decision-making bodies in order to broaden and increase awareness of the
importance of protecting cave and karst values, and to introduce conservation resources available through the NSS.
The PBF performs concentrated outreach to help land developers understand the importance of preserving and protecting
underground habitat and resources, and proactively educates developers about available techniques and resources to help
manage and conserve cave and karst resources.
The PBF distributes informational and educational outreach materials to each target group. Materials address
specific problems, goals, objectives, and a vision for the conservation of underground systems.
The PBF develops formal partnerships with other land use and related organizations to strengthen awareness
and the message and vision for the conservation of caves and karst systems.
The PBF identifies journals and publications where cave and karst articles can be submitted. The PBF works
collaboratively within the Society and with partner organizations to publish articles in professional
publications and produce creative media focused on informing target groups (developers, planners, local
officials, planning commissioners, conservancies, watershed protection agencies, and other land managers)
about issues and solutions involving the impact of land use development on cave and karst systems.
The PBF works with target groups to present conservation information about cave and karst systems at target
The PBF compiles a list of communities where land development impacts cave and karst systems. The PBF sends
information packets to the identified communities.
The PFB compiles a list of the best karst protection ordinances in the country. The PFB is examining the
possibility of developing a model ordinance with current best practices, possibly in partnership with the
American Planning Association.
The PFB compiles a database of NSS members who have credentials to present at target group conferences.
The PFB welcomes and encourages input from and participation by NSS members, grottos, and internal
organizations in outreach efforts to local communities in which cave and karst systems are impacted by land development.
The PFB identifies potential funding sources and partnerships to develop and distribute information, create
informative digital media, and perform outreach to target groups.
The information below may be of assistance in Texas Cave Conservation and/or Cave Management.