Compensation in Wetlands

  • Royal C. Gardner
Reference work entry


Compensation in the wetland context generally refers to actions taken to offset residual impacts of activities that adversely affect wetlands. Compensation will typically occur as the third stage of the avoid-mitigate-compensate sequence; that is, compensation is utilized when a development project cannot avoid wetland impacts, and steps to mitigate or minimize those unavoidable impacts do not reduce the impact level to zero or some minimal threshold. Depending on the jurisdiction, compensation may also be called an offset or compensatory mitigation or similar terms. A compensation requirement can be part of a policy that seeks to achieve an overall “no net loss” of wetland area and/or function. For example, regulations promulgated by the US Environmental Protection Agency and US Army Corps of Engineers (2008), the wetland regulatory agencies under the US Clean Water Act offer working definitions.


Compensation Offset Mitigation “no net loss” 


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Copyright information

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

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for Biodiversity Law and PolicyStetson University College of LawGulfportUSA
  2. 2.Institute for Land, Water and Society, Charles Sturt UniversityAlburyAustralia
  3. 3.UNESCO-IHEDelftThe Netherlands

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