National Wetland Policy: USA

Reference work entry

Abstract

United States wetland policy has developed over the past four decades. Prior to the 1970s, government policy largely reflected the view of wetlands as unproductive swampland that posed a nuisance to human health, promoting drainage and repurposing for agriculture. Concern about wetland loss emerged only after its negative impacts to fish and waterfowl became apparent. Lack of restriction on wetland conversion leads to the loss of more than 50% of total wetland acreage in the contiguous United States over a 200-year period ending in 1980. In 1972, the US Congress passed the Clean Water Act, amending an existing law to create what remains the lynchpin of federal wetlands policy. As understanding of the importance of wetlands grew, a broad range of other federal legislation and programs advancing wetlands protection emerged. By 1987, the NGO Conservation Foundation convened a cross-sectoral forum leading to recommendation that national policy be guided by the goal of “no net loss” that was partially successful in reducing the rate of wetland loss but which did not account for regional differences and impacts on wetland functionality.

Keywords

US Jurisdiction Supreme court Federal authority No net loss Mitigation Army Corps of Engineers 

References

  1. Code 2000 of Federal Register Part 230 “Section 404(b)(1) Guidelines for Specification of Disposal Sites for Dredged or Fill Material.”Google Scholar
  2. Dahl TE. Wetlands Losses In the United States 1780’s TO 1980’s. U.S. Department of the Interior. Washington, DC: Fish and Wildlife Service; 1990.Google Scholar
  3. Dahl TE. Status and trends of wetlands in the conterminous United States 1986 to 1997. U.S. Department of the Interior. Washington, DC: Fish and Wildlife Service; 2000.Google Scholar
  4. Dahl TE. Status and trends of wetlands in the conterminous United States 1998 to 2004. U.S. Department of the Interior. Washington, DC: Fish and Wildlife Service; 2006.Google Scholar
  5. Dahl TE. Status and trends of wetlands in the conterminous United States 2004 to 2009. U.S. Department of the Interior. Washington, DC: Fish and Wildlife Service; 2011.Google Scholar
  6. EPA- Corps of Engineers Proposed Rule available at: http://water.epa.gov/lawsregs/guidance/wetlands/CWAwaters.cfm
  7. EPA Office of Water Assessment and Watershed Protection Division. National Management Measures to Protect and Restore Wetlands and Riparian Areas for the Abatement of Non-Point Source Pollution, Chapter 4: Management Measure for Protection of Wetlands and Riparian Areas (EPA-841-B-05-003). Washington, DC; 2005.Google Scholar
  8. Kihslinger R. Sucess of wetland mitigation projects. Nat Wetl Newsl. 2008; 30(2).Google Scholar
  9. National Research Council. Restoration of aquatic ecosystems: science, technology, and public policy. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press; 1992.Google Scholar
  10. Rapanos v. United States, 547 U.S. 715. 2006.Google Scholar
  11. Wilkinson J, Thompson J. 2005 Status Report on Compensatory Mitigation in the United States. Environmental Law Institute: Washington, DC; 2006.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Environment and Natural Resources DivisionUnited States Department of JusticeWashingtonUSA

Personalised recommendations