Knowledge in the field of acidic deposition is expanding rapidly, and both ex perts and non-experts are challenged to keep up with the latest information. We designed our assessment to include both the basic foundation needed by non experts and the detailed information needed by experts. Our assessment in cludes background information on acidic deposition (Chapter 1), an in-depth discussion of the nature of soil acidity and ecosystem H+ budgets (Chapter 2), and a summary of rates of deposition in the Southeastern U.S. (Chapter 3). A discussion of the nature of forest soils in the region (Chapter 4) is followed by an overview of previous assessments of soil sensitivity to acidification (Chapter 5). The potential impacts of acidic deposition on forest nutrition are described in the context of the degree of current nutrient limitation on forest productivity (Chap ter 6). The results of simulations with the MAGIC model provided evaluations of the likely sensitivity of a variety of soils representative of forest soils in the South (Chapter 7), as well as a test of soil sensitivity criteria. Our synthesis and recommendations for research (Chapter 8) also serve as an executive summary. A complementary volume in the Springer-Verlag Ecological Studies series should be consulted for information on European forests. This volume, Acidic Deposition and Forest Decline in the Fictelgebirge, edited by E.-D. Schultze and O.L. Lange, also provides greater detail on the physiologic responses of trees than we present in our regional assessment."