Wetlands: An Overview Of The Issues by Elaine Gray

Page Updated:
Book Views: 23

Elaine Gray
Date of release


Wetlands: An Overview Of The Issues

Find and Download Book

Click one of share button to proceed download:
Choose server for download:
Get It!
File size:2 mb
Estimated time:3 min
If not downloading or you getting an error:
  • Try another server.
  • Try to reload page — press F5 on keyboard.
  • Clear browser cache.
  • Clear browser cookies.
  • Try other browser.
  • If you still getting an error — please contact us and we will fix this error ASAP.
Sorry for inconvenience!
For authors or copyright holders
Amazon Affiliate

Go to Removal form

Leave a comment

Book review

Recent Congresses have considered numerous policy topics that involve wetlands. Many reflect issues of long-standing interest, such as applying federal regulations on private lands, wetland loss rates, and restoration and creation accomplishments. The issue receiving the greatest attention recently has been determining which wetlands should be included and excluded from requirements of the Clean Water Act (CWA), especially the Section 404 permit program that regulates waste discharges affecting wetlands, which is administered by the Army Corps of Engineers and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). As a result of Supreme Court rulings in 2001and 2006 that narrowed federal regulatory jurisdiction over certain isolated wetlands, the jurisdictional reach of the permit program has also been narrowed. In response, legislation intended to reverse the Court’s rulings in these cases has been introduced in Congress but not enacted. In March 2014, EPA and the Army Corps proposed a rule to define the scope of waters protected by the CWA. According to the agencies, the proposed rule would revise the existing administrative definition of "waters of the United States" consistent with the Supreme Court’s rulings and consistent with science concerning the interconnectedness of tributaries, wetlands, and other waters and the effects of these connections on the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of downstream waters. The proposal, which could be finalized in 2015, is controversial with groups who contend that it would vastly increase federal assertion of jurisdiction that triggers CWA regulatory requirements. Wetland protection efforts continue to engender controversy over issues of science and policy. Topics include the rate and pattern of loss, whether all wetlands should be protected in a single fashion, the effectiveness of the current suite of laws in protecting them, and the fact that 75% of remaining U.S. wetlands are located on private lands. Many public and private efforts have sought to mitigate damage to wetlands and to protect them through acquisition, restoration, enhancement, and creation, particularly coastal wetlands. While recent data indicate success in some restoration efforts, leading to increases in some types of wetlands in some locations, many scientists question if restored or created wetlands provide equivalent replacement for natural wetlands that contribute multiple environmental services and values. One reason for controversies about wetlands is that they occur in a wide variety of physical forms, and the numerous values they provide, such as wildlife habitat, also vary widely. In addition, the total wetland acreage in the lower 48 states is estimated to have declined from more than 220 million acres three centuries ago to 110.1 million acres in 2009. The national policy goal of no net loss, endorsed by administrations for the past two decades, had been reached by 2004, according to the Fish and Wildlife Service, as the rate of loss had been more than offset by net gains through expanded restoration efforts authorized in multiple laws. However, more recent data show wetlands losses of nearly 14,000 acres per year. Many protection advocates say that gains do not necessarily account for the changes in quality of the remaining wetlands, and many also view federal protection efforts as inadequate or uncoordinated. Others, who advocate the rights of property owners and development interests, characterize these efforts as too intrusive. Numerous state and local wetland programs add to the complexity of the protection effort.

Readers reviews