Wetland Breaking News: August 2015

                   
   
IN THIS ISSUE:

EDITOR'S NOTE

EDITOR'S CHOICE

NATIONAL NEWS

STATE NEWS

WETLAND SCIENCE

RESOURCES &
PUBLICATIONS

POTPOURRI

CALENDAR OF EVENTS

INDEX

 

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Wetland Breaking New: August 2015

All photos by
Jeanne Christie, ASWM

     

EDITOR'S NOTE

Wetland Breaking News: August 2015No Clear Sailing in the Waters of the U.S.

It’s no secret that the Clean Water Rule issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has created quite a stir across the country. News reports have been published weekly on challenge after challenge to the rulemaking from both sides of the aisle. On one side, they say the rule is too expansive: Twelve lawsuits brought against EPA's Clean Water Rule to be heard together. On the other side they say the rule isn’t expansive enough: Greens jump into legal donnybrook over Obama rule. Then there are the challenges that inevitably surface when trying to formulate policy and regulations between two very different federal agencies such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE). When word got out that there was an internal debate within the ACOE about the rulemaking, both sides jumped to leverage that to reinforce their position. See GOP probes alleged internal problems with Obama water rule and Memos may open Obama rule to legal assault from left.

I do not envy the EPA or the ACOE right now. Not only are they trying to help states and other stakeholders interpret and implement the new rulemaking, but they are also simultaneously facing major legal challenges. With limited resources and capacity, it is going to be very difficult to effectively do both. These pending court cases may ultimately negate the many years of work that they have invested in creating the rulemaking – which was undertaken at the bequest of those trying to interpret the Clean Water Act after it was muddied by two U.S. Supreme Court cases – Rapanos and Carabell in 2006 and SWANCC in 2001.

The Association has been following the evolution of the rulemaking since it began and will continue to provide its members and states with the best training and interpretation of the rule and court challenges as they develop. If you missed the June 17th ASWM webinar on “Understanding the Final Clean Water Rule and Changes to CWA Jurisdiction Included in Senate Bill 1140” click here to download the recording. And you can stay up to date with announcements on our homepage as well as our webpage dedicated to the Clean Water Act.

Reminds me of the good old Kermit the Frog quote: It ain’t easy being green.

Happy August!

Marla J. Stelk
Editor
Wetland Breaking News

     
                   

Wetland Breaking News - August 2015

EDITOR'S CHOICE

Twelve lawsuits brought against EPA's Clean Water Rule to be heard together

By Whitney Forman-Cook – Agri-Pulse – July 31, 2015
A dozen lawsuits brought in protest against the Obama administration's newly finalized “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) rule are scheduled to be heard together as one case before the 6th Circuit Court based in Cincinnati, Ohio. The WOTUS rule, renamed the Clean Water Rule prior to being published in the Federal Register by EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers in late June, aims to expand Clean Water Act protections to cover streams and wetlands, angering some agricultural stakeholders who perceive the measure as unduly burdensome. For full story, click here.

Greens jump into legal donnybrook over Obama rule

By Annie Snider – E&E Publishing, LLC – July 22, 2015
With state and industry challenges to the Obama administration's controversial water rule piling up in courts across the country, a number of green groups today brought suits from the opposite end of the spectrum, arguing that the final version does not go far enough in protecting the nation's streams, ponds and wetlands. The Center for Biological Diversity, Waterkeeper Alliance, Center for Food Safety and Turtle Island Restoration Network filed a petition in the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco challenging the rule, which is aimed at clearing up years of confusion over the reach of the Clean Water Act. For full story, click here.

GOP probes alleged internal problems with Obama water rule

By Timothy Cama – The Hill – July 30, 2015
The House Oversight Committee is looking into allegations that two Obama administration agencies had sharp disagreements over the development of a major water pollution rule. The panel released internal Army Corps of Engineers memos Thursday from earlier this year in which officials said the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) efforts on the rule lacked sound scientific basis and the agency did not consult with the Army Corps. The GOP is using the memos to open a new chapter in its fight against the “waters of the United States” rule, released in June to assert federal power over wetlands, streams and other minor waterways that did not have clearly defined pollution protections. For full story, click here.

Memos may open Obama rule to legal assault from left

By Annie Snider – E&E Publishing, LLC – August 5, 2015
The biggest threat to the Obama administration's ambitious water rule may come not from industry foes or states challenging what they call a federal power grab, but from greens suing under one of the country's foremost environmental laws, legal experts say. Internal Army documents first reported by Greenwire last week show the Army Corps of Engineers' on-the-ground experts had major concerns about the final U.S. EPA-Army Waters of the U.S. rule, particularly about limits to Clean Water Act protections that were added toward the end of the process (Greenwire, June 27). For full story, click here.

Crafting Wetland Program Plans to Increase the Likelihood of Securing Appropriated Funds and Grants

By Glenn Barnes – Environmental Finance Blog – August 4, 2015
EPA is encouraging all states and tribes to create wetland program plans. These plans lay out the activities that each state or tribal program plans to undertake over the next few years in each of the four core elements of wetland programs: regulation, monitoring & assessment, restoration & protection, and water quality. For full blog post, click here.

Obama rolls out historic climate rule: 'We only get one planet'

By Jordan Fabian – The Hill – August 3, 2015 – Video
President Obama on Monday rolled out a historic rule that imposes the first-ever federal limits on greenhouse gas pollution from power plants. An emotional Obama argued climate change already affects the “reality we’re living with every day,” adding that it would be “shameful” if the U.S. waited any longer to address its causes. “We only get one home. We only get one planet. There is no plan B,” he said at the White House. “I don’t want my grandkids to not be able to swim in Hawaii, or not to be able to climb a mountain and see a glacier, because we didn’t do something about it.” The rule is the cornerstone of Obama’s climate agenda, and administration officials have called it a crucial step to build momentum toward an international climate agreement in Paris this December. For full story and to view video, click here.

NWF to Sue DOT over Oil Pipeline Oversight Failures

By Jordan Lubetkin – National Wildlife Fund – July 28, 2015
The National Wildlife Federation today filed a notice of intent to sue the U.S Department of Transportation for the agency’s failure for more than 20 years to protect people, fish, wildlife, and communities from oil pipelines in the nation’s inland waters, from the Great Lakes to the Yellowstone River. The legal action carries nationwide implications: Due to the agency’s decades-long oversight failures, every U.S. oil pipeline that intersects a navigable water is operating illegally. The National Wildlife Federation is asking the U.S. Department of Transportation to abide by the law, issue regulations for oil pipelines in water, and require every owner and operator of an oil pipeline in a navigable water to submit a safety response plan that needs to be approved. For full story, click here.

Soil-health movement gains converts

By Mychel Matthews – Idaho PressTribue – July 26, 2015
Nestled in a valley west of the Big Wood River lies a pricey chunk of land where cattle graze in the shadows of brush-covered foothills. Spiked Diamond Ranch operated for years as a traditional cattle ranch. But big changes are coming to the 750-acre spread. The ranch has no choice but to change, says its manager, Dan Vandermeulen. Using traditional farming methods, the ranch was not able to pull its own weight — and pay its increasing property taxes — forcing Vandermeulen’s family to think about selling. Farmers and ranchers all over the country have found themselves in similar predicaments and are experimenting with ways to survive in the competitive field of agriculture. For some, it means finding ways to increase production. For others, it means finding ways to reduce costs. For those in drought-threatened areas, it means finding ways to conserve water. For full story, click here.

Major Midwest flood risk underestimated by as much as five feet, study finds

By Gerry Everding – PHYS.org – June 30,015
As floodwaters surge along major rivers in the midwestern United States, a new study from Washington University in St. Louis suggests federal agencies are underestimating historic 100-year flood levels on these rivers by as much as five feet, a miscalculation that has serious implications for future flood risks, flood insurance and business development in an expanding floodplain. For full story, click here.

Nearly 40% of US population at risk of flooding – study

RT.com – July 28, 2015
Changing storm dynamics are causing a greater risk of flooding than they were 50 years ago, particularly on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts, putting nearly 40 percent of the US population in harm’s way, according to a new study from a Florida university. In the study, Florida researchers used records of rainfall, sea levels and hurricanes for more than 30 American cities along the Atlantic, Gulf and Pacific coasts to assess the relationship between heavy rainfall on land and abnormal rises in water levels occurring during a storm or storm surge. For full story, click here.

Improving Wetland Restoration Success and Natural Floodplain Functions Alliance Joint Webinar: Stream/Wet Meadow Restoration – September 8, 2015

Wetland Restoration Success and Natural Floodplain Functions Alliance joint webinar: Stream/Wet Meadow Restoration will be held on September 8, 2015 at 3:00 p.m. Eastern. Presented by Will Harman, Owner, Stream Mechanics and Matt Daniels, Principal Engineer/Project Manager, River Design Group, Inc. For more information and to register, click here.

Wetland Mapping Consortium (WMC): Part 2- “The Florida Wetlands Integrity Dataset: Analysis of nonrenewable energy data and construction of graph-theoretic networks to quantify landscape integrity” – September 16, 2015

Wetland Mapping Consortium Webinar: Part 2 - “The Florida Wetlands Integrity Dataset: Analysis of nonrenewable energy data and construction of graph-theoretic networks to quantify landscape integrity” will be held on Wednesday, September 16, 2015 from 3:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m. EDT. Presented by John Humphreys and Amir Mahjoor, Florida Department of Environmental Protection. For more information and to register, click here.

ASWM Members’ Wetland Webinar – September 29, 2015

ASWM’s Members’ Wetland Webinar: Solar Project Siting and Wetland Permitting will be held on Wednesday, September 29, 2015 at 3:00 p.m. Eastern. Co-hosted by the Association of State Wetland Managers (ASWM) and the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission (NEIWPCC). For more information, click here.



Wetland Breaking News - August 2015

NATIONAL NEWS

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Expands Urban Wildlife Conservation Program

Contact: Vanessa Kauffman – U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – August 28, 2014
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announced today it will partner with communities, corporations and nonprofits to help restore the natural environment and boost opportunities for residents in six cities to connect with nature. Together, the Service and partners expect to direct more than $1.7 million to community-led habitat restoration projects and engage thousands of volunteers in the efforts. For more information, click here.

Firefighters struggle to contain blazes as Soda Fire becomes largest in US

The Guardian – August 15, 2015
Winds helped stoke wildfires sweeping across the northern Rocky mountains, the Pacific north-west and elsewhere on Saturday, posing new problems for firefighters trying to contain flames that have been fed by drought. One blaze, the Soda Fire near Nampa in south-west Idaho, had burned 265,000 acres to become the largest blaze in the nation. The weather was expected to worsen fires in some areas over the weekend, as the federal government said it would exhaust its firefighting budget next month. For full story, click here.

Forest Service Report: Rising Firefighting Costs Raises Alarms

Contact: Paul Rhynard – USDA – August 5, 2015
For the first time in its 110-year history, the Forest Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is spending more than 50 percent of its budget to suppress the nation's wildfires. A new report released today by the Forest Service estimates that within a decade, the agency will spend more than two-thirds of its budget to battle ever-increasing fires, while mission-critical programs that can help prevent fires in the first place such as forest restoration and watershed and landscape management will continue to suffer. Meanwhile, the report notes, these catastrophic blazes are projected to burn twice as many acres by 2050. For full news release, click here.

National Challenge of Leaking Mines Dwarfs Colorado Spill

By Lindsay Whitehurst – Associated Press – August 14, 2015
A river in Colorado that was turned sickly yellow by a mine waste spill reopened Friday after the now-diluted toxic plume passed through and reached Lake Powell - a huge reservoir 300 miles downstream that feeds the Colorado River and supplies water to the Southwest. Water officials, however, said the plume that includes lead, arsenic and other heavy metals now presents little danger to users beyond Lake Powell - such as the city of Las Vegas - because the contaminants will further settle out and be diluted in the reservoir along the Utah-Arizona border. For full story, click here.

Epa Watchdog Investigating Toxic Mine Spill In Colorado

By Lindsay Whitehurst – Associated Press – August 14, 2015
A river in Colorado that was turned sickly yellow by a mine waste spill reopened Friday after the now-diluted toxic plume passed through and reached Lake Powell - a huge reservoir 300 miles downstream that feeds the Colorado River and supplies water to the Southwest. Water officials, however, said the plume that includes lead, arsenic and other heavy metals now presents little danger to users beyond Lake Powell - such as the city of Las Vegas - because the contaminants will further settle out and be diluted in the reservoir along the Utah-Arizona border. For full story, click here.

Arch Coal Subsidiaries to Make System-Wide Upgrades to Reduce Pollution Entering U.S. Waters

Contact: Bonnie Smith – EPA – August 6, 2015
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced today that Arch Coal Inc., one of the nation’s largest coal companies, and 14 of its subsidiaries under the International Coal Group Inc. (ICG) have agreed to conduct comprehensive upgrades to their operations to ensure compliance with the Clean Water Act. The settlement resolves hundreds of Clean Water Act violations related to illegal discharges of pollutants at the companies’ coal mines in Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia. The states of West Virginia, Virginia and Pennsylvania are co-plaintiffs in today’s settlement. The companies will also pay a $2 million civil penalty. For full news release, click here.

Washington DC Slowly Sinking Into the Sea Says Study

By Rina Marie Doctor – Tech Times – July 30, 2015
A new study found that Washington D.C. may drop by approximately six or more inches in the next 100 years as researchers discovered that the land under the Chesapeake Bay is sinking slowly. The falling of this land may contribute significantly to the problems of sea level rise and all the more increase the possibility of flooding, which is a growing problem of the country due to global warming and subsequent ice melting. Adding all these circumstances may hasten the hazards faced by infrastructures, roads, wildlife refuges, monuments and military installations. For full story, click here.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Protects Rare Hummingbird under the Endangered Species Act

Contac: Vanessa Kauffman – U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – July 28, 2015
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will list the rare Honduran emerald as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Measuring less than four inches in length and the only bird species endemic to Honduras, this hummingbird is in decline due to degradation, fragmentation, and loss of its dry thorn forest habitat as a result of cattle grazing and agriculture. The Service finds as a result of its review of the best scientific and commercial information available, the Honduran emerald is at risk of extinction throughout its range – the definition of an endangered species – and in need of protection. For full press release, click here.

Sage grouse latest win for greens in sweeping listing pact

By Phil Taylor – E&E Publishing, LLC – July 27, 2015
The Bureau of Land Management has beefed up sage grouse protections on some 50 million acres of the West. The Agriculture Department has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to preserve and enhance the bird's habitat. Western governors have signed executive orders to prioritize the bird's welfare. Such efforts might not have occurred if the Obama administration had not signed a pair of controversial settlements with environmental groups four years ago. For full story, click here.

Outrage over EPA emissions regulations fades as states find fixes

By Joby Warrick – The Washington Post – July 23, 2015
Even after years of talk about a “war on coal,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell startled some of his constituents in March when he urged open rebellion against a White House proposal for cutting pollution from coal-fired power plants. The Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan is “extremely burdensome and costly,” the Kentucky Republican said in letters advising all 50 states to boycott the rule when it goes into effect this summer. For full story, click here.

USDA declares parts of Puerto Rico disaster areas due to drought

By Jessica Dinapoli – Reuters – July 15, 2015
The U.S. Department of Agriculture named several Puerto Rico municipalities natural disaster areas on Wednesday, giving them access to emergency loans to make up for losses of crops and livestock as a result of the recent drought. The drought is another blow to Puerto Rico as it struggles to restructure $72 billion in debt. The USDA declared municipalities located southeast of the capital, San Juan, as disaster area. It also named other areas, including some of the island's suburbs, as disaster areas. For full story, click here.

Wetland Breaking News - August 2015STATE NEWS

AK: Mine misgivings: Proposed mines near Southeast Alaska raise concerns

By Steve Quinn – Alaska Dispatch News – August 16, 2015
Sitting portside on her family’s commercial fishing vessel, Heather Hardcastle peers through a thin layer of smoke as far as she can see up the Taku River Inlet. Behind her, sockeye, pink and chum salmon, plus an occasional coho, become trapped in the quarter-mile net trailing the stern. She looks back, away from the smoke, and says, “My parents have always said you have to respect the salmon. It’s given us our livelihood; it’s given us our family; it’s given us our place. This is all about the place and the salmon make the place.” While not oppressive, the smoke is clearly here to stay, having traveled northwest from a series of raging summertime British Columbia wildfires. For full story, click here.

CA: California water officials seek penalties in Santa Barbara oil spill

By Sharon Bernstein – Reuters – August 3, 2015
California water quality regulators have asked state Attorney General Kamala Harris to consider enforcement action against the owner of an oil pipeline that ruptured near Santa Barbara in May, spilling petroleum onto beaches and the Pacific Ocean. The Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board said on Monday that it had referred the incident near Refugio State Beach to the state's top prosecutor, who under the law could seek penalties of up to $25,000 per day of violation, plus $25 for every gallon of oil spilled. For full story, click here.

CO: Colorado River's pollution levels fall after spill

By Timothy Cama – The Hill – August 12, 2015
Colorado state officials said pollution appears to have cleared from the Animas River after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) caused a massive mine waste spill. Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) and Larry Wolk, executive director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, said Tuesday that their latest sampling show that the river is back to the pollution levels it had before the spill of 3 million gallons of heavy metals last week, The Durango Herald reported. “Isn’t that amazing? That’s much better than what I would have hoped for,” Hickenlooper said in Durango, according to the Herald. “The indications are that the threat to the human health is returning back to pre-event levels, if not already there now,” he continued. For full story, click here.

DE: Delaware launches open data site

State of Delaware
This site provides the ability to search, filter, and download Delaware's publicly available spatial data in a variety of formats including shapefile and KML. Select a category to see the data available, or use the search tool at the top of the page. For more information, click here.

FL: Lake O farmers lauded for 20 years of beating cleanup goals

By Susan Salisbury – Palm Beach Post – August 13, 2015
For the 20th straight year, farmers in the Everglades Agricultural Area south of Lake Okeechobee have exceeded the phosphorus reduction requirements for water flowing from their farms to the Everglades, the South Florida Water Management District said Thursday. This year was record-breaking, with a 79 percent reduction, more than three times the 25 percent mandated by law. Too much phosphorus in The Everglades can cause unwanted plants such as cattails to crowd out native vegetation and wreak havoc on the Everglades’ food chain. Thursday, the district’s governing board recognized the farmers’ achievement with a proclamation. About 30 growers who farm some of the 470,000 acres in the EAA were in attendance and given a standing ovation. For full blog post, click here.

LA: Ghosts of Katrina Still Haunt New Orleans' Shattered Lower Ninth Ward

By Greg Allen – NPR – August 3, 2015
The flooded streets and destroyed homes of the New Orleans neighborhood known as the Lower Ninth Ward were among the most powerful and iconic images from Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath 10 years ago. Now, much of New Orleans is back — more than half of the city's neighborhoods have recovered some 90 percent of their pre-storm population. That's not the case for the Lower Ninth. For full story, click here.

LA: BP must pay local government settlements by Aug. 26, judge rules

By Mark Schleifstein – NOLA.com-The Times-Picayune – July 27, 2015 – Video
BP must complete its payments by Aug. 26 to local governments that have accepted settlement terms for losses experienced as a result of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster and ensuing 87-day release of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, a federal judge ordered Monday (July 27). "The court was advised today that BP has reviewed and is satisfied with releases and associated documents returned by the vast majority of local governmental entities and therefore, BP has accepted the releases," U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier said in a two-paragraph ruling. For full story and to view video, click here.

LA: Use BP oil spill fine money for restoration, voters say

By Mark Schleifstein – NOLA.com-The Times-Picayune – July 20, 2015
An overwhelming majority of voters in coastal communities in Louisiana and other Gulf states continue to see the BP oil spill as a major problem and want oil spill fine money spent on restoration of natural resources, according to a nonpartisan poll released Thursday (July 16) by The Nature Conservancy and the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. The after-effects of the spill on natural areas and wildlife along the Gulf Coast ranked fourth, at 61 percent, on a list of extremely and very serious problems cited by voters, behind the economy and unemployment, quality of public education, and crime. For full story, click here.

MI: Enbridge Anniversary: Profiles from the Frontlines of an Oil Spill

By David Hasemyer – InsideClimate News
The Kalamazoo River near Marshall, Mich. today teems with kayakers paddling amid swimming turtles, buzzing dragonflies and fish that leap from the water—with few visible scars of the environmental disaster that struck the riverside community five years ago. The 40-mile tainted stretch of river that was closed when more than 1 million gallons of heavy crude oil spilled into it has recovered better than expected, environmental officials say. But even as the river flows clear and wildlife flourish, many of the people who woke to the stench of oil flowing past their homes say their lives will never be the same. For full story, click here.

MN: Water Quality Certification expands to farms across Minnesota

Minnesota Farm Guide – July 29, 2015
Farmers across Minnesota are now taking advantage of a state program that celebrates and ensures protection of the state’s water resources. With the help of a five-year, $9 million award from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and legislation enacted earlier this year, the Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MAWQCP) is formally transitioning from four pilot areas to being available to any agricultural producer statewide. For full story, click here.

MN: Minnesota rain gardens go big to fight pollution, reuse water

By Elizabeth Dunbar – MPR News – July 27, 2015
With its Target store and mix of single family homes, Argenta Hills looks like any typical suburban tract. But it's anything but typical when it rains. Instead of traditional gutters and catch basins, the Inver Grove Heights development has cuts in the curb for stormwater to flow into rain gardens where plants soak it up. Part of the massive Target parking lot and some road intersections are porous, allowing water to seep into the ground. For bigger storms, low-lying basins collect the excess and prevent flooding. For full story, click here.

MT: Montana declares state of emergency as U.S. Northwest battles blazes

By Laura Zuckerman – Reuters – August 16, 2015 – Video
Montana declared a state of emergency on Sunday to battle more than a dozen wildfires as blazes, fueled by drought and winds, also raged in Oregon, Idaho and the California wine region north of San Francisco. Wildfires have destroyed 50 homes in north central Idaho while a fire in north-central Washington nearly doubled in size, almost encircling the town of Chelan and forcing the evacuation of some 1,500. The Reach fire, sparked on Friday by lightning strikes and high winds, had doubled to 55,000 acres (22,250 hectares) by Sunday, fire incident spokesman Wayne Patterson said. For full story and to view video, click here.

NE: Nebraska's water management catches eye of other states

Iowa Farmer Today – August 8, 2015
Nebraska’s unique system for managing its groundwater is catching the eye of other states that are running dry and threatening farmers with restrictions after decades of overuse. Despite its widespread use for crop irrigation, Nebraska’s groundwater supply has remained stable while states such as California and Texas struggle with shortages. The difference has led some out-of-state water groups and local governments to ask about Nebraska’s water-management practices. “I think interest has certainly increased, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it didn’t continue to increase,” said Jim Schneider, acting director of the Nebraska Department of Natural Resources. Nebraska regulates its groundwater through 23 natural resources districts, represented by locally elected board members, while the state DNR oversees rivers and lakes. For full story, click here.

NY: 165 state lawmakers ask GE to finish the Hudson dredging job

By Nick Muscavage – The Legislative Gazette – July 27, 2015
As General Electric finishes up its sixth and final season of dredging the Hudson River of toxic PCBs, more than 160 state legislators and several advocacy groups sent letters to CEO Jeffrey Immelt urging the company to go above and beyond its mandated dredging requirement. The letters, sent last month, were signed by 25 senators — mainly Democrats with the exception of Republican, Bill Larkin, whose district is Cornwall which is along the Hudson River — as well as 140 Assembly members and representatives from environmental advocacy groups such as Natural Resources Defense Council, Riverkeeper and Clearwater. For full story, click here.

NY: Study: Sandy caused record sea levels, $23 billion in damage in New York

By Devin Henry – The Hill – July 24, 2015
Superstorm Sandy caused $23 billion in damage in New York state alone and delivered the highest water levels there on record, according to a new federal report. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency said this week that the 2012 storm produced sea levels much higher than other historic storms to hit the New York region. Peak storm tides from Sandy were more than 9.5 feet above sea level, according to the agencies' report. On average, those tides were about half a foot, or 9 percent, higher than those produced by a 1992 nor’easter, and 2.5 feet, or 48 percent, higher than those associated with tropical storm Irene, a weakened hurricane that hit the region in 2011. For full story, click here.

NC: Clock ticking as EPA prepares response over hog pollution

By Gabe Rivin – North Carolina Health News – August 18, 2015
The EPA’s 180 days are almost up. By Aug. 19, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency must address allegations over North Carolina’s hog industry, which environmentalists say is harming the health of racial minorities. The EPA’s actions could have wide-reaching effects on the industry and public health near hog farms. But despite its deadline, the agency doesn’t appear ready to make a decision, according to an environmental group that lodged the formal allegations. For full story, click here.

NC: What to Do with 264 Billion Pounds of Coal Ash

By Gabe Rivin – North Carolina Health News – August 10, 2015
The ash, created when coal is burnt to produce electricity, has proven vexing for Duke, environmentalists and state lawmakers, all of whom are jockeying over its fate. On one hand, the science seems clear. North Carolina’s coal ash is stored in large basins that are dug into the ground. These were constructed without liners, and so toxic metals in the ash, such as arsenic and chromium, can leach out of the basins. The metals can find their way into subsurface water, or groundwater. This migration has the potential to contaminate drinking water for nearby residents who draw their water from wells drilled into the ground. After a new round of tests near coal ash ponds, the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources in April raised the possibility that coal ash is contaminating residents’ drinking water. For full story, click here.

OH: Brown asks agriculture officials to aid algal bloom efforts

By Tom Jackson – Sandusky Register – July 31, 2015
U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, an Ohio Democrat, and two of his colleagues are asking Thomas Vilsack, President Obama's secretary of agricultural, to take immediate action to deal with harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie. Brown is asking Vilsack to develop a comprehensive strategy to aid efforts to deal with problems in the western basin of Lake Erie, and asked Vilsack to release additional funding to persuade farmers to plant cover crops that will reduce the effects of rainfall runoff. For full story, click here.

OH: Experts: Trouble ahead for Lake Erie

By Keith Matheny – Detroit Free Press – July 30, 2015
Scientists predict one of the most severe outbreaks yet this summer of toxic algae blooms on western Lake Erie — the type that last August disrupted the water supply of 400,000 people in Toledo and southeastern Michigan. And while the region’s drinking water is so far safe, acres of spreading green muck float around Toledo’s water intake pipe on Lake Erie yet again. A coalition of conservation groups and Ohio business, farming and government officials took to boats Wednesday, giving reporters and themselves a first-hand look at another summer of algae blooms already spreading on Lake Erie. For full story, click here.

OR: Solutions: West Coast wastewater plant chooses trees over technology

By Brian Bienkowski – Environmental Health News – July 30, 2015
Five years ago Medford, Oregon, had a problem common for most cities—treating sewage without hurting fish. The city’s wastewater treatment plant was discharging warm water into the Rogue River. Fish weren’t dying, but salmon in the Rogue rely on cold water. And the Environmental Protection Agency has rules to make sure they get it. So, instead of spending millions on expensive machinery to cool the water to federal standards, the city of Medford tried something much simpler: planting trees. For full story, click here.

PA: Compared to Colorado spill, local mine drainage extensive

By Brendan Gibbons – The Times-Tribune.com – August 14, 2015
In western Colorado, a discharge of millions of gallons of yellow-orange drainage from an abandoned mine is cause for an emergency. Here in the former coal fields of Northeast Pennsylvania, it’s just another day. As with other Pennsylvania regions with past coal mining, drainage from abandoned mines is one of the most significant water quality issues affecting the watersheds of Scranton, Wilkes-Barre and their suburbs. For full story, click here.

PA: PA Officials Reiterate Commitment to Clean Water, Chesapeake Bay Cleanup at Executive Council Meeting

PR Newswire – July 23, 2015
In Washington, DC, today, PA Department of Environmental Protection Secretary John Quigley and Department of Agriculture Secretary Russell Reading restated Pennsylvania's commitment to improving river and stream health throughout the commonwealth, and ultimately, the health of the Chesapeake Bay. Secretaries Quigley and Redding represented Governor Tom Wolf at today's meeting of the Chesapeake Bay Executive Council. With Pennsylvania contributing half of the water flowing into the bay, Secretaries Quigley and Redding said states throughout the watershed are looking to the commonwealth for leadership, and the state is responding. For full story, click here.

PA: Corps of Engineers awards contract for Presque Isle Bay study

By Andrew Kornacki – DVIDS – July 23, 2015
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Buffalo District awarded a contract for $473,116 to URS Cooperation and Baird Inc., July 6 to conduct a beneficial use of dredged material tracer study at Presque Isle Bay, Erie, Pennsylvania. The goal of this project is to trace how sediment naturally moves in the system, to determine if sediments dredged from Erie Harbor can be beneficially used to nourish and potentially accelerate the growth of the distal end of the Presque Isle Bay peninsula. For full story, click here.

SD: South Dakota coalition to tackle soil health in state

By Barry Amundson – Grand Forks Herald – July 31, 2015
A coalition has formed in South Dakota to try to improve soil health and thus the productivity of the land. Chairman Doug Sieck said the goal is to connect farmers and ranchers across the state so they can learn more about ways to improve organic matter to also keep and “regenerate” the soil for years to come. The Selby rancher, who farms near the Missouri River in far north-central South Dakota, has lofty goals for the group including getting at least 1,500 to 2,000 members. For full story, click here.

TX: After 17 Years, Texas Poised to Resolve Oil Spill

By Jim Malewitz – The Texas Tribune – August 13, 2015
In the time it has taken the state and federal governments to penalize a Koch Industries affiliate for a South Texas oil spill, 17 different quarterbacks started games for the Dallas Cowboys, including the team’s current head coach. Now, however, Koch Pipeline Company is finally poised to pay up for spilling nearly 24,700 gallons of crude into Karnes County’s Marcelinas Creek — almost 17 years after the fact, according to filings in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. For full story, click here.

TX: Texas' Climate Stubbornness Takes an Increasingly Big Toll

By Katherine Bagley – InsideClimate News – July 15, 2015
The Texas flooding in May that pulled houses off foundations and swamped city streets provided a glimpse of what scientists have long warned could be its new norm because of global warming. But it did nothing to sway the state's politicians, who have done next to nothing to adjust to a climate that is already bringing more damaging extreme weather. For full story, click here.

VT: Advocates Skeptical of EPA Pollution Targets for Lake Champlain

By Elizabeth Hewitt – VT Digger – August 17, 2015
The Environmental Protection Agency set ambitious goals in Vermont for phosphorus reduction in Lake Champlain in a document released last week, leaving some advocates questioning whether the state will be able to meet the new standards. The federal agency set targets for the state to reduce overall phosphorus pollution in Lake Champlain by 33.8 percent. Phosphorus pollution has been an ongoing issue in Vermont for years, with algae blooms extending throughout much of the northern part of the lake. Lawmakers attempted to rein in runoff into the lake with Act 64, passed earlier this year. For full story, click here.

VA: Algal bloom noted in Norfolk river

Fredericksburg.com – July 29, 2015
Much of the ordinarily green Lafayette River has turned reddish-brown this summer because of an extensive algal bloom that has taken ahold of the urban river that winds through much of Norfolk. The blooms are considered a threat to fish, crabs and oysters because they can reduce or eliminate oxygen in the river, potentially leading to the creation of dead zones. The algae can also clog up fish gills and shellfish, even if dead zones aren’t created. What’s creating the algal boom is a combination of warm water and excess nitrogen and phosphorous from various pollutants. For full story, click here.

VA: Eagle 'hot spot' in Virginia could be replaced by a golf course and resort

By Darryl Fears – The Washington Post – July 21, 2015
The emerald tree canopy on this town’s scenic high cliffs is something of a luxury community for bald eagles. There are gorgeous views of the Rappahannock River, nice fishing and tasty seafood. Best of all, it’s one of the top places in the Chesapeake Bay region to raise their young. But if the corporation that owns the land where they live has its way, moving day will come soon. Richmond County recently approved a request from Diatomite Corporation of America to rezone a large section of the cliffs for a sprawling resort with pricey housing and an 18-hole golf course atop a habitat used by tens of thousands of eagles each year. For full story, click here.

WA: Spokane sues Monsanto for PCB contamination

By Nicholas Deshais – The Spokesman-Review – August 3, 2015
The city of Spokane has filed a lawsuit against the international agrochemical giant Monsanto, alleging that the company sold chemicals for decades that it knew were a danger to human and environmental health. The lawsuit, which does not specifically state what the city is seeking in monetary damages, also alleges that Monsanto is responsible for the high levels of polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, in the Spokane River. For full story, click here.

WA: 'Duwamish Revealed' project means to inspire river's revitalization

By Andie Waterman – The Seattle Times – August 2, 2015 – Video
Dustin Slimp, equipment manager at Pacific Pile & Marine in South Park, usually operates the company’s barge-mounted cranes for marine work. But come Saturday, Aug. 8, he’ll move the crane downriver for a different task: suspending an aerial performer above the Duwamish River in an illuminated moon, while members of a chorus contribute their voices to the show. For full story and to view video, click here.

WA: Pre-statehood water rights curtailed in the Yakima Basin

Washington Department of Ecology – July 24, 2015
Water rights that were among the earliest in the Territory of Washington to be used for irrigation have been shut off in tributaries of the Yakima River due to extreme drought conditions. Flows in Cowiche Creek and the Teanaway River are so dire that 129 irrigators with rights conferred as far back as 1873 must stop watering their orchards, hay and alfalfa crops on some 2,153 acres. For full story, click here.

WI: Scott Walker calls for dramatic rollback of EPA's role in regulating polluters

By Steven Verburg – Wisconsin State Journal – July 28, 2015
Gov. Scott Walker wants to all but eliminate the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and place each state in charge of controlling air and water pollution within its borders if he is elected president, he told a conservative newspaper. “I’m all for a sustainable environment, but you have to balance it with a sustainable economy, and I think in our state we’ve shown you can do that hand in hand,” Walker told the Washington Examiner in an article published Monday. “I think states can do it all across America much better than the federal government.” Critics said without the EPA there would be a “race to the bottom” among politicians in states competing for business investment with fewer safeguards in one state against pollution flowing through the air or water to another state. For full story, click here.

 

Wetland Breaking News: August 2015WETLAND SCIENCE

Study: Blue-green algae a growing threat to drinking water supply

By Stephen Feller – UPI – August 13, 2015
Unchecked blooms of cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae, in rivers, lakes and reservoirs pose a growing health risk to animals and possibly humans, according to researchers in a new analysis of waterways in the United States. Cyanobacteria are often fatal to pets and wildlife that drink contaminated water. In humans, the toxin microcystin, produced by cyanobacteria, is a liver toxin and may cause liver cancer. Some forms of the algae also cause gastrointestinal illnesses and acute skin rashes. For full story, click here.

Climate Change, Healthy Soils, and Holistic Planned Grazing: A Restoration Story

Allan Savory – Revitalization News – August 1, 2015
Regenerating the health and productivity of our soils is critical for ensuring the Earth’s climate remains conducive to not only human life but other species as well. Moreover, we need to take direct action so that we have enough water and food to sustain a growing population of people. Livestock, properly managed, have a critical role to play in achieving these goals. For full article, click here.

Pollinator Power: Nutrition Security Benefits of an Ecosystem Service

By Wendee Nicole – Environmental Health Perspectives – August 2015
The world has been abuzz with the dramatic losses of cultivated honey bees due to colony collapse disorder as well as declines of native pollinator species across the globe. Scientists have recently begun calculating the extent to which food crops depend on animal pollinators including bees, butterflies, and bats, with one study assigning an economic value to the “ecosystem service” provided by pollinators at approximately $167 billion. Even more recently, several other new studies have offered evidence that pollinators may also have a beneficial impact on nutrition security—the availability of essential macro- and micronutrients in the human diet. For full article, click here.

Importing Both Salamanders and Their Potential Destruction

By Carl Zimmer – The New York Times – July 30, 2015
We humans can drive species toward extinction by hunting them or destroying their habitat. But we can also threaten them in a more subtle but no less dangerous way: by making them sick. In the early 1900s, humans introduced malaria-spreading mosquitoes to Hawaii, and many native bird species were decimated. More recently, a fungus introduced to the United States from Europe has proved lethal to several species of bats. Now, scientists and wildlife managers are struggling to prevent the next infectious disaster. A recently discovered fungus is killing salamanders in Europe. It is likely spread by the pet trade and could soon arrive in North America, home to about half of all salamander species. For full story, click here.

Chesapeake Bay's underwater grass abundance rises 27 percent in 2014

Chesapeake Bay Program – July 30, 2015
Between 2013 and 2014, underwater grass abundance in the Chesapeake Bay rose 27 percent, marking a 27,600-acre increase from the last decade’s low and an achievement of 41 percent of our 185,000-acre goal. Scientists attribute this boost in bay grasses to the rapid expansion of widgeongrass in moderately salty waters, even in areas where vegetation has not been observed before. Scientists have also observed a modest recovery of eelgrass in very salty waters, where the hot summers of 2005 and 2010 led to dramatic diebacks. For full blog post, click here.

Alaska's Permafrost is Burning. That's Not Good For You.

Candice Gaukel Andrews – Good Nature Travel – July 28, 2015
Alaska is on fire. Even where I live in Wisconsin, I can feel it. A NASA photo shows that a plume of smoke from those northern blazes extends all the way down through the Midwest. But that’s not the only reason why I should care about Alaska’s fires. And whether or not you can see, smell or feel the flames where you live, there’s a reason you should be concerned, too. Stored within the permafrost—a vast, subterranean body of icy soils that stay frozen all year—there may be more than twice as much carbon as there is in the atmosphere itself. Our atmosphere thought it lost that carbon long ago. Today, however, all of a sudden, that carbon is being returned to the air through the state’s current, massive fire outbreaks. And that may accelerate climate change. For full blog post, click here.

U-Michigan: Multiple factors may shape toxicity of Lake Erie cyanobacterial blooms

By Jim Erickson – University of Michigan News – July 24, 2015
The most detailed genetic study of western Lake Erie's shifting cyanobacterial communities is yielding new insights into the factors that were at play last August when high levels of a bacterial toxin shut down the drinking water supply to more than 400,000 Toledo-area residents. The University of Michigan-led study is revealing that as environmental conditions in the lake changed throughout summer 2014, the relative abundance of various cyanobacterial strains shifted in response, altering the bacterial bloom's toxicity. For full story, click here.

Agriculture and forest restoration could coexist - with proper planning

By Apoorva Joshi – Mongabay – July 23, 2015
Around the world, humans have razed billions of hectares of forests, grasslands, and other ecosystems in our pursuit of land on which to grow our food and expand our infrastructure. Ecological restoration is a widely recognized way of reversing some of the damage done to converted land. Now, a new study recently published in Frontiers in Ecology finds it may help save one of the most imperiled ecosystems on the planet – while still allowing room for agriculture. For full story, click here.

Drainage of Prairie Pothole Wetlands Can Increase Flooding and Degrade Ecosystems

Contacts: Marisa Lubeck and Michael Anteau – U.S. Geological Survey – July 15, 2015
The drainage of small wetlands can decrease wildlife habitat and may contribute to flooding in the Prairie Pothole Region (PPR), according to a recent U.S. Geological Survey study. USGS scientists analyzed data on 141 large PPR wetlands in North Dakota from the 1930s through 2010, and found that they have increased significantly in size. Most of the increases in surface water were due to drainage of smaller wetlands, likely for more efficient agricultural production. This drainage moves surface water into fewer wetlands, making them larger and degrading their abilities to reduce regional flooding and provide productive habitat for animals. Small wetlands in the PPR are economically and environmentally important because they help recharge local and regional groundwater. They also provide habitat for 50 to 80 percent of North American ducks. For full story, click here.

Turtle Hotspots Identified Around the World Contain Diverse Species and Richness

Environmental News Network – July 15, 2015
Global biodiversity is becoming more threatened as the human population continues to grow and use the world’s resources. Turtles have the misfortune of being on the leading edge of biodiversity decline and serve as an indicator of ecosystem degradation. For full story, click here.

Mangroves Help Protect Against Sea Level Rise

Eco Magazine
Mangrove forests could play a crucial role in protecting coastal areas from sea level rise caused by climate change, according to new research. A joint study between researchers at the University of Southampton along with colleagues from the Universities of Auckland and Waikato in New Zealand used cutting-edge mathematical simulations to study how mangrove forests respond to elevated sea levels. Taking New Zealand mangrove data as the basis of a new modeling system, the team was able to predict what will happen to different types of estuaries and river deltas when sea levels rise. For full article, click here.

Thousands of salmon die in hotter-than-usual Northwest rivers

By Courtney Sherwood – Reuters
Unseasonably hot water has killed nearly half of the sockeye salmon migrating up the Columbia River through Oregon and Washington state, a wildlife official said on Monday. Only 272,000 out of the more than 507,000 sockeye salmon that have swum between two dams along a stretch of the lower Columbia River have survived the journey, said Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife fisheries manager John North. "We've never had mortalities at this scale," said North. The die-off comes as U.S. West Coast states grapple with drought conditions and the Columbia is seeing the third-highest count of sockeye returning from the ocean to spawn since 1960, federal figures show. For full story, click here.

Wetland Breaking News: August 2015RESOURCES AND PUBLICATIONS

Wetlands and Climate Change: Considerations for Wetland Program Managers

Association of State Wetland Managers – July 2015
The Association of State Wetland Managers recently prepared a white paper entitled Wetlands and Climate Change: Considerations for Wetland Program Managers, exploring the relationships between wetland management and climate mitigation and adaptation. These relationships are divided into three categories: the impacts of climate change on wetland ecosystems; the role of wetlands in mitigating the impact of climate change; and the role of wetlands in supporting adaptation to climate change impacts. Information regarding the status of state wetland programs in addressing climate change is also included. The paper was prepared with support from an EPA State Wetland Program Development Grant. To download report, click here.

ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS: Efforts to Assess the Impact of Extreme Weather Events

U.S. Government Accountability Office – July 22, 2015
The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently released the first in a series of
reports on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers: Efforts to Assess the Impact of Extreme
Weather Events. This report explores (1) how the Corps prepares for and responds to extreme weather events in its planning and operation of water resources projects, and (2) the extent to which the Corps has assessed whether existing water resources infrastructure is prepared for extreme weather events. GAO reviewed Corps guidance on planning, operations, and assessments, and interviewed Corps officials from headquarters and eight districts- selected, in part, on number of projects. GAO previously recommended that the Corps work with Congress to develop a more stable funding approach for carrying out national, systematic assessments of the ability of water resources infrastructure to withstand extreme weather events. The Corps has not taken action, but GAO continues
to believe the recommendation is valid. GAO's other reports will examine operations and dam and levee safety, which GAO plans to issue in fiscal year 2016. For a quick link to the report, click here.

Guidebook on Using Beavers to Restore Streams, Wetlands, and Floodplains Updated and Released

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – July 14, 2015
The North Pacific Landscape Conservation Cooperative has partnered with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, NOAA, Portland State University, and the U.S. Forest Service to develop a comprehensive guide on using beaver for stream restoration. The goal of this guidebook is to provide an accessible, useful resource for anyone involved in using beaver to restore streams, floodplains, wetlands, and riparian areas. It provides a practical synthesis of the best available science, an overview of management techniques, and case studies from throughout the western United States. Target audiences include landowners, biologists, engineers, scientists, foresters, farmers, ranchers, the regulatory and funding communities, and others interested in how beaver activity can be effectively used to restore riparian habitat and improve water quality. The information contained in the guide is meant to inform decisions on fish and wildlife habitat restoration and management, range land improvement, wetland management, mitigation, transportation system planning and maintenance, and water management. Click here to view the Guidebook and learn about an upcoming related workshop.

Uses of Monitoring and Assessment: Considerations for State and Tribal Programs

Association of State Wetland Managers – June 2015
The Association of State Wetland Managers (ASWM) is pleased to release a new report - Uses of Monitoring and Assessment: Considerations for State and Tribal Programs. This report – which was prepared with financial assistance from an EPA State Wetland Program Development Grant – explores the various ways that states and tribes could make better use of existing monitoring and assessment methods to obtain science-based answers to wetland management problems. While it provides an overview of many common approaches to wetland monitoring, the focus is primarily on why these methods are selected for a given purpose. Numerous examples of current monitoring applications in state and tribal programs are included. Monitoring and assessment are key components of resource management, and one of EPA’s “core essential elements” for state wetland programs. However, monitoring can also be extremely expensive and time consuming. This report encourages the thoughtful identification of the most appropriate and efficient methods in light of available financial and staff resources. It may be particularly useful to states or tribes that are developing or updating wetland monitoring and assessment strategies. To download report, click here.

Report: "Green Infrastructure: Lessons from Science and Practice"

Science Policy Exchange – June 2015
A new report released by scientists from Syracuse University, the Cary Institute, and the Harvard Forest, in partnership with the Science Policy Exchange demonstrates the importance, as well as the limits, to green infrastructure. Green infrastructure can provide many benefits for public health, local communities, wildlife habitat, and climate resiliency. Across the U.S., cities and towns are turning to green infrastructure to provide much-needed updates to aging storm water management systems. Understanding the strengths and limits of green infrastructure is essential to impactful use. Click here to access the report.

Tying Flood Insurance to Flood Risk for Low-Lying Structures in the Floodplains

The National Academies Press – 2015
Floods take a heavy toll on society, costing lives, damaging buildings and property, disrupting livelihoods, and sometimes necessitating federal disaster relief, which has risen to record levels in recent years. The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was created in 1968 to reduce the flood risk to individuals and their reliance on federal disaster relief by making federal flood insurance available to residents and businesses if their community adopted floodplain management ordinances and minimum standards for new construction in flood prone areas. Insurance rates for structures built after a flood plain map was adopted by the community were intended to reflect the actual risk of flooding, taking into account the likelihood of inundation, the elevation of the structure, and the relationship of inundation to damage to the structure. Today, rates are subsidized for one-fifth of the NFIP's 5.5 million policies. Most of these structures are negatively elevated, that is, the elevation of the lowest floor is lower than the NFIP construction standard. Compared to structures built above the base flood elevation, negatively elevated structures are more likely to incur a loss because they are inundated more frequently, and the depths and durations of inundation are greater. To download report, click here.

 

Wetland Breaking News: August 2015

POTPOURRI

Weed whackers: Monsanto, glyphosate, and the war on invasive species

By Andrew Cockburn Harper’s Magazine August 18, 2015
On a Friday evening in January, a thousand people at the annual California Native Plant Society conference in San Jose settled down to a banquet and a keynote speech delivered by an environmental historian named Jared Farmer. His chosen topic was the eucalyptus tree and its role in California’s ecology and history. The address did not go well. Eucalyptus is not a native plant but a Victorian import from Australia. In the eyes of those gathered at the San Jose DoubleTree, it qualified as “invasive,” “exotic,” “alien” — all dirty words to this crowd, who were therefore convinced that the tree was dangerously combustible, unfriendly to birds, and excessively greedy in competing for water with honest native species. For full article, click here.

The sand you're lying on could be 100 times more contaminated than the ocean

By Tim Darragh – nj.com – July 30, 2015
With the first closures this season of ocean beaches in New Jersey for high levels of pollution, a new study suggests that a bigger problem for those beaches might not be their water, but their sand. The study, appearing in this month's edition of the journal Environmental Science and Technology, sought to figure out why wastewater contamination levels can be 10 to 100 times higher in beach sand than in nearby ocean water. For full story, click here.

Lessons Learned from the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge

By John Hartig – WildRead – July 27, 2015
The Refuge is like an ecological tapestry made up of numerous species and habitats that when woven together are more beautiful and much stronger than imagined with just the individual species and habitats. Much like a textile tapestry is a source of pride in the home, the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge tapestry has become a source of pride in southeast Michigan and southwest Ontario. For full blog post, click here.

Economy Main Factor In US Emissions Decline

Pollution Online – July 21, 2015
Recent declines in greenhouse gas emissions in the US were spurred more by the economic recession than by a shift from coal to natural gas, according to new IIASA research. From 2007 to 2013, US carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels decreased by about 11%. This decline was widely attributed to a shift from coal to natural gas in US electricity production. For full story, click here.

Use It or Lose It: Across the west, exercising one's right to waste water

By Abrahm Lustgarten – ProPublica – June 9, 2015
High in the Rocky Mountains, snowmelt fills a stream that trickles down into Ohio Creek and then onward toward the Upper Gunnison River. From there, it tumbles through the chasms of the Black Canyon, joining the Colorado River, filling the giant Lake Powell reservoir, and, one day, flowing to Los Angeles. But before the water gets more than a few miles off the mountain, much of this stream is diverted into dirt ditches used by ranchers along the Ohio Creek Valley. Standing astride one of those ditches one day last fall, Bill Ketterhagen dug his boot soles against the concrete edge of a 5-foot-wide dam. He spun a steel wheel and opened a gate that allowed water to pour into his fields of hay crops. For full story, click here.

Today's water laws encourage waste. Can big data help shape better ones?

ProPublica
“Use it or lose it” water policies — a cornerstone of water rights laws across the West — are encouraging ranchers and others to use precious water supplies whether they truly need them or not. How is this century-old policy affecting the drought? Are these policies effective? For full story, click here.

 

CALENDAR OF EVENTS

   

WEBINARS

   

MEETINGS

   

TRAINING

     
                   
WEBINARS          
                   
AUGUST 2015                  
                   
August 25, 2015
12:00 noon-1:00 p.m. EDT
      The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Project Spotlight webinar: Best Practices in Rural Ditches          
                   
SEPTEMBER 2015                  
                   
September 8, 2015
3:00 p.m. EDT
      Improving Wetland Restoration Success and Natural Floodplain Functions Alliance Joint Webinar: Stream/Wet Meadow Restoration          
                   
September 10, 2015
1:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m. EDT
      Webinar co-sponsored by the NOAA National Marine Protected Areas Center, the EBM Tools Network, OpenChannels.org, and MPA News: Maps and Datasets for Blue Carbon Habitats          
                   
September 15, 2015
1:00 p.m. EDT
      American Water Resources Association webinar: Unique Program to Drive Water Quality in the Delaware River Watershed          
                   
September 16, 2015
3:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m. EDT
      Wetland Mapping Consortium Webinar: Part 2 - “The Florida Wetlands Integrity Dataset: Analysis of nonrenewable energy data and construction of graph-theoretic networks to quantify landscape integrity”
         
                   
September 16, 2015
1:00 p.m.-2:30 p.m. EDT
      Center for Watershed Protection webcast: What to Do About Trashy Watersheds          
                   
September 24, 2015
2:00 p.m. EDT
      Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM) webinar: Developing & Implementing Dam Removal Projects          
                   
September 29, 2015
3:00 p.m. EDT
      ASWM’s Members’ Wetland Webinar: Solar Project Siting and Wetland Permitting. Co-hosted by the Association of State Wetland Managers (ASWM) and the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission (NEIWPCC).          
                   
OCTOBER 2015                  
                   
October 6, 2015
1:00 p.m. ET
      AWRA webinar: History of Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment in the United States          
                   
October 6, 2015       EPA's Green Infrastructure Program 2015 Webcast Series: Winter Weather O&M for Green. More information will be available in late September here.          
                   
NOVEMBER 2015                  
                   
November 12, 2015
1:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m. EST
      National Park Service Ocean Parks Centennial          
                   
November 18, 2015
1:00 p.m.-2:30 p.m. EST
      Center for Watershed Protection webcast: Checking in on Post-Construction Stormwater Management          
                   
DECEMBER 2015                  
                   
December 8, 2015       EPA's Green Infrastructure Program 2015 Webcast Series: Ahead of the Curve – Implementing Green Infrastructure in Rural and Growing Communities. Information will be available here in late November.          
                   
MEETINGS        
                   
AUGUST 2015                  
                   
August 23-27, 2015
Manchester, England
      Society of Ecological Restoration 6th World Conference on Ecological Restoration: Towards Resilient Ecosystems: Restoring the Urban, the Rural and the Wild          
                   
August 23-28, 2015
La Crosse, Wisconsin
     

4th Biennial Symposium of the International Society for River Science

         
                   
August 23-28, 2015
Stockholm, Sweden
      Stockholm International Water Institute: 2015 World Water Week          
                   
August 24-25, 2015
Stockholm, Sweden
      Climate Resolve: California Climate Change Symposium: Using Climate Science to Plan for a Resilient Future
         
                   
August 26-28, 2015
San Francisco, California
      U.S. Water Alliance: One Water Leadership Summit          
                   
SEPTEMBER 2015                  
                   
September 8-11, 2015
Rancho Mirage, California
      2015 Floodplain Management Annual Conference in conjunction with ASFPM Arid Regions Conference          
                   
September 8-11, 2015
Karnataka, INDIA
      The Sixth Student Conference on Conservation Science - Bengaluru 2015          
                   
September 13-18, 2015
York, UK
      WETPOL 2015 - 6th International Symposium: Wetland Pollutant Dynamics and Control Annual Conference          
                   
September 14-15 and
September 16-17, 2015
Seymour, Indiana
      Wetland Restoration and Training: Wetland Restoration Workshop          
                   
September 15-17, 2015
Lincoln, Nebraska
      USDA and EPA are cosponsoring a National Workshop on Water Quality Markets. Registration deadline is August 14, 2015.          
                   
September 16-18, 2015
Washington, DC
      Transportation Research Board: International Conference on Transportation System Resilience to Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events          
                   
September 17, 2015
Superior, Wisconsin
      Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve, University of Wisconsin Extension workshop: Water Words that Work. Register by August 31, 2015, click here.          
                   
September 17-18, 2015
Oakland, California
     

San Francisco Estuary Partnership: State of the San Francisco Estuary Conference 12th Edition

         
                   
September 23-25, 2015 Baltimore, Maryland      

Resource Institute, Inc.: Mid-Atlantic Stream Restoration Conference

         
                   
September 25-26, 2015
Lake Ariel, Pennsylvania
      Lacawac Ecology Conference (LEC) annual fall conference of Lacawac Sanctuary and Field Station          
                   
September 25-27, 2015
Shepherdstown, West Virginia
      Moving the Needle Toward a Restored Bay Watershed: 10th annual Chesapeake Watershed Forum.          
                   
September 26-30, 2015
Chicago, Illinois
      Water Environment Federation Technical Exhibition and Conference          
                   
September 28-29, 2015
Chicago, Illinois
      2015 Great Lakes Commission Annual Meeting          
                   
September 28-October 4, 2015 Kelowna and Vernon, BC       British Columbia Wildlife Federation's Wetlands Education Program: Communities Conserving Wetlands.          
                   
September 29-October 1, 2015
Chicago, Illinois
      Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition: 11th Annual Great Lakes Restoration Conference          
                   
OCTOBER 2015                  
                   
October 6-8, 2015
Olympia, Washington
      Pacific Northwest Chapter of the Society of Wetland Scientists Conference: From a Watershed Perspective: Integrating Science into Policy. Abstracts due by August 1, 2015.          
                   
October 7-9, 2015
New York, New York
      6th annual Student Conference on Conservation Science          
                   
October 7-9, 2015
Natural Bridge, Virginia
      Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation Office of Environmental Education Conference: What Lies Under Nature’s Bridge: Bridging the Classroom and the Outdoors          
                   
October 7-11, 2015
University of Oklahoma
Norman, Oklahoma
      Society of Environmental Journalists: Weather, Water, Energy: News in Every Neighborhood          
                   
October 14-15, 2015
Villanova, Pennsylvania
      Villanova Urban Stormwater Partnership: 9th Stormwater Management Symposium          
                   
October 21-23, 2015
Tustin, Michigan
      Huron River Watershed Council: 2015 Michigan Aquatic Restoration Conference          
                   
October 28-31, 2015
San Diego, California
      California Invasive Plant Council: 24th Annual Cal-IPC Symposium. Abstracts due by June 15, 2015.          
                   
October 28-30, 2015
Acme, Michigan
      Michigan Department of Environmental Quality: 9th Biennial State of Lake Michigan and 15th Annual Great Lakes Beach Association Joint Conference. Call for abstracts deadline is June 15, 2015.          
                   
NOVEMBER 2015                  
                   
November 3-5, 2015
Little Rock, Arkansas
      Natural Areas Association: 2015 Natural Areas Conference          
                   
November 3-5, 2015
Boston, Massachusetts
      2015 Rising Seas Summit: Transforming Decision Making Developing Adaptive Infrastructure and Advancing Solutions          
                   
November 4-5, 2015
Coeur d’Alene, Idaho
      Sixth Annual Northwest Climate Conference
         
                   
November 6-8, 2015
Manhattan, Kansas
      13th Annual Ecological Genomics Symposium          
                   
November 8-12, 2015
Portland, Oregon
      Coastal Estuarine Research Federation Conference: Grand Challenges in Coastal & Estuarine Science; Securing Our Future          
                   
November 13, 2015
North Linthicum, Maryland
      The Maryland Water Monitoring Council 21st Annual Conference: Protecting the Source - Sustaining Maryland’s Waters
         
                   
November 16-18, 2015
Greater Portland, Maine
      Think Blue Maine Partner Maine Stormwater Conference. Abstract deadline is Friday, March 27, 2015.          
                   
November 16-19, 2015
Denver, Colorado
      AWRA's 50th Annual Water Resources Conference
Special session proposals due by May 15, 2015.
         
                   
November 16-19, 2015
Tampa, Florida
      National Working Waterfront Network: National Working Waterfronts & Waterways Symposium
         
                   
November 17-20, 2015
Saratoga Springs, New York
      North American Lake Management Society 35th International Symposium: North American Lakes: Embracing their History, Ensuring Their Future          
                   
November 20-22, 2015
Tucson, Arizona
      Society of Ecological Restoration, Southwest Chapter Annual Conference. Call for abstracts deadline is September 4, 2015.          
                   
DECEMBER 2015                  
                   
December 14-18, 2015
San Francisco, California
      American Geophysical Union (AGU): 2015 AGU Fall Meeting          
                   
JANUARY 2016                  
                   
January 10-14, 2016
Asilomar, California
      American Society of Naturalists Conference: Unifying Biological Principles Across Disciplines          
                   
FEBRUARY 2016                  
                   
February 1-4, 2016
Tampa, Florida
      The 2016 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill and Ecosystem Science Conference: One Gulf: Healthy Ecosystems, healthy communities. Deadline to submit an abstract is September 18, 2015.          
                   
February 3-4, 2016
Wilmington, Delaware
      The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control: 2016 Delaware Wetlands Conference: Advancing Wetland Science and Conservation in the Mid-Atlantic Region. Abstract deadline is October 14, 2015.          
                   
February 23-25, 2016
Green Bay, Wisconsin
      Wisconsin Wetlands Association 21st Annual Wetland Science Conference. Symposia proposals due by September 30, 2015.          
                   
MARCH 2016                  
                   
March 8-10, 2016
Seattle, Washington
      2015 Climate Leadership Conference. Speaker and Session Proposals open through September 15, 2015.          
                   
March 10-11, 2016
Denver, Colorado
      Rocky Mountain Land Use Institute 25th Anniversary Conference: Western Places/Western Spaces: Examining the Past, Exploring the Future          
                   
March 29-April 2, 2016
Vancouver, BC
      Society for Applied Anthropology 76th Annual Meeting. Abstract Submission Deadline October 15, 2015.          
                   
APRIL 2016                  
                   
April 25-27, 2016
Anchorage, Alaska
      2016 AWRA Spring Specialty Conference. Abstract deadline is December 1, 2015.          
                   
TRAINING        
                   
AUGUST 2015                  
                   
August 27-28, 2015
Denver, Colorado
      Urban Watershed Research Institute Course: FIRM Map Revisions - Technical & Administrative Aspects - 2015          
                   
August 28-29, 2015
Denver, Colorado
      Richard Chinn Environmental Training, Inc. course: Wetland Permitting Training          
                   
SEPTEMBER 2015                  
                   
September 10-11, 2015
Charleston, South Carolina
      Duncan & Duncan Wetland & Endangered Species Training Course: Identification of Grasses, Sedges, and Rushes          
                   
September 10-11, 2015
South, Millville, New Jersey
      Rutgers University Course: Vegetation Identification for Wetland Delineation: South          
                   
September 11-18, 2015
Logan Lake, British Columbia
      British Columbia Institute of Technology Wetland Restoration Course. Email for more information.          
                   
September 12, 2015
Upper Marlboro, MD
      Izaak Walton League’s Creek Freak environmental education workshop for teachers and nonformal educators          
                   
September 14-18, 2015
Covington, Louisiana
      The Wetland Training Institute, Inc. course: Basic Wetland Delineation course. For other dates and locations, click here.          
                   
September 14-19, 2015
Whitefish, Montana
      Wetland Training Institute Course: Wetland Delineation with Emphasis on Soils and Hydrology          
                   
September 15-18, 2015
Denver, Colorado
      Aarcher Institute of Environmental Training course: The Original Environmental Compliance Bootcamp™. For other dates, click here.          
                   
September 17-18, 2015
San Diego, California
      The Wetland Training Institute, Inc. Course: on Riparian Habitat Restoration in the Arid Southwest          
                   
September 17-18, 2015
Denver, Colorado
      Urban Watersheds Research Institute Course: Stormwater Planning & Design Using SWMM - 2015          
                   
September 21-25, 2015
St. Michaels, Maryland
      Environmental Concern Course: Basic Wetland Delineation Professional Course          
                   
September 23-25, 2015
Hays, Kansas
      The Wetland Training Institute, Inc. Course: Woody Plants (Trees, Shrubs, and Vines) Identification          
                   
September 28-29, 2015
Bordentown, New Jersey
      Rutgers University Course: Wetland Construction: Planning and Functional Design          
                   
September 28-October 2, 2015
Portage, Wisconsin
      The Wetland Training Institute, Inc. Course: Basic Wetland Delineation          
                   
September 30, 2015
Lacey, Washington
      Washington State Department of Ecology, Coastal Training Program course: Selecting Wetland Mitigation Sites Using a Watershed Approach
         
                   
OCTOBER 2015                  
                   
October 5-9, 2015
Humble, TX
      Whitenton Group course: Jurisdictional Waters Delineation Training
         
                   
October 5-December 18, 2015
Online
      The Swamp School Online Certified Wetland Hydrologist Class
         
                   
October 8-9, 2015
Tuckerton, New Jersey
      Rutgers University Course: Identification of Tidal Wetland Plants          
                   
October 17, 2015
St. Michaels, Maryland
      Environmental Concern Course: Project WET 2.0 Register by November 18, 2015.          
                   
October 20-21, 2015
Richmond, Virginia
      The Wetland Training Institute, Inc. course: Basic Wetland Delineation eSession with Field Practicum          
                   
October 20-23, 2015
Basking Ridge, New Jersey
      Rutgers University course: Methodology for Delineating Wetlands. Instructors: Ralph Tiner and Mallory N. Gilbert          
                   
October 21, 2015
Basking Ridge, New Jersey
      Rutgers University course: Introduction to Wetland Identification. Instructor: Ralph Tiner          
                   
October 23, 2015
Denver, Colorado
      Urban Watersheds Research Institute Course: Overview of WQ Regulations and Compliance - 2015          
                   
October 26, 2015
New Brunswick, New Jersey
      Rutgers University Course: Understanding Advanced Stormwater Management Techniques          
                   
NOVEMBER 2015                  
                   
November 2-3, 2015
Atlanta Georgia
      Duncan & Duncan Wetland & Endangered Species Training course: Interagency Consultation for Endangered Species          
                   
November 12-13, 2015
Atlanta, Georgia
      Duncan & Duncan Wetland & Endangered Species Training Course: Advanced Hydric Soils and Hydrology (Piedmont)          
                   
DECEMBER 2015                  
                   
December 3-4, 2015
Atlanta, Georgia
      Duncan & Duncan course: Problem and Atypical Wetland Delineation (Piedmont)          
                   
December 3-4, 2015
Denver, Colorado
      Urban Watersheds Research Institute Course: Floodplain Hydraulics Using HEC RAS - 2015          
                   
December 7-11, 2015
Front Royal, Virginia
      The Smithsonian-Mason School of Conservation Course: Statistical Downscaling of Global Climate Models in SDSM 5.2          
                   
December 8, 2015
Atlanta, Georgia
      Duncan & Duncan Wetland & Endangered Species Training Course: Endangered Species Act Overview. This course will also be held on July 21, 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia.          
                   
December 9, 2015
St. Michaels, Maryland
      Environmental Concern course: WOW! The Wonders of Wetlands. This course will also be held on July 13, August 3, and August 4, 2015.          
                   
December 11, 2015
St. Michaels, Maryland
      Environmental Concern course: POW! The Planning of Wetlands. This course will also be held on August 6, 2015.          
                   
SPECIAL EVENTS 2015                  
                   
September 26, 2015
Wilmer Park, Chestertown
      Chestertown RiverArts and Washington College Center for Environment & Society and SANDBOX: Chestertown RiverFest          
                   
November 28, 2015       The Wetlands Institute: Wetland Wonderland          
                   

For more wetland events, meetings, conferences, and courses nationwide, visit the ASWM calendar.


JOBS

Wetland Breaking News - August 2015


INDEX

EDITOR'S NOTE

EDITOR'S CHOICE

  • Twelve lawsuits brought against EPA's Clean Water Rule to be heard together
  • Greens jump into legal donnybrook over Obama rule
  • GOP probes alleged internal problems with Obama water rule
  • Memos may open Obama rule to legal assault from left
  • Crafting Wetland Program Plans to Increase the Likelihood of Securing Appropriated Funds and Grants
  • Obama rolls out historic climate rule: 'We only get one planet'
  • NWF to Sue DOT over Oil Pipeline Oversight Failures
  • Soil-health movement gains converts
  • Major Midwest flood risk underestimated by as much as five feet, study finds
  • Nearly 40% of US population at risk of flooding – study
  • ASWM’s Wetland Restoration Webinar: Stream/Wet Meadow Restoration – September 8, 2015
  • Wetland Mapping Consortium (WMC): Part 2- “The Florida Wetlands Integrity Dataset: Analysis of nonrenewable energy data and construction of graph-theoretic networks to quantify landscape integrity” – September 16, 2015
  • ASWM Members’ Wetland Webinar – September 29, 2015

NATIONAL NEWS

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Expands Urban Wildlife Conservation Program
  • Firefighters struggle to contain blazes as Soda Fire becomes largest in US
  • Forest Service Report: Rising Firefighting Costs Raises Alarms
  • National Challenge of Leaking Mines Dwarfs Colorado Spill
  • EPA Watchdog Investigating Toxic Mine Spill In Colorado
  • Arch Coal Subsidiaries to Make System-Wide Upgrades to Reduce Pollution Entering U.S. Waters
  • Washington DC Slowly Sinking Into the Sea Says Study
  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Protects Rare Hummingbird under the Endangered Species Act
  • Sage grouse latest win for greens in sweeping listing pact
  • Outrage over EPA emissions regulations fades as states find fixes
  • USDA declares parts of Puerto Rico disaster areas due to drought

STATE NEWS

  • AK: Mine misgivings: Proposed mines near Southeast Alaska raise concerns
  • CA: California water officials seek penalties in Santa Barbara oil spill
  • CO: Colorado river's pollution levels fall after spill
  • DE: Delaware launches open data site
  • FL: Lake O farmers lauded for 20 years of beating cleanup goals
  • LA: Ghosts of Katrina Still Haunt New Orleans' Shattered Lower Ninth Ward
  • LA: BP must pay local government settlements by Aug. 26, judge rules
  • LA: Use BP oil spill fine money for restoration, voters say
  • MI: Enbridge Anniversary: Profiles from the Frontlines of an Oil Spill
  • MN: Water Quality Certification expands to farms across Minnesota
  • MN: Minnesota rain gardens go big to fight pollution, reuse water
  • MT: Montana declares state of emergency as U.S. Northwest battles blazes
  • NE: Nebraska's water management catches eye of other states
  • NY: 165 state lawmakers ask GE to finish the Hudson dredging job
  • NY: Study: Sandy caused record sea levels, $23 billion in damage in New York
  • NC: Clock ticking as EPA prepares response over hog pollution
  • NC: What to Do with 264 Billion Pounds of Coal Ash
  • OH: Brown asks agriculture officials to aid algal bloom efforts
  • OH: Experts: Trouble ahead for Lake Erie
  • OR: Solutions: West Coast wastewater plant chooses trees over technology
  • PA: Compared to Colorado spill, local mine drainage extensive
  • PA: PA Officials Reiterate Commitment to Clean Water, Chesapeake Bay Cleanup at Executive Council Meeting
  • PA: Corps of Engineers awards contract for Presque Isle Bay study
  • SD: South Dakota coalition to tackle soil health in state
  • TX: After 17 Years, Texas Poised to Resolve Oil Spill
  • TX: Texas' Climate Stubbornness Takes an Increasingly Big Toll
  • VT: Advocates Skeptical of EPA Pollution Targets for Lake Champlain
  • VA: Algal bloom noted in Norfolk river
  • VA: Eagle 'hot spot' in Virginia could be replaced by a golf course and resort
  • WA: Spokane sues Monsanto for PCB contamination
  • WA: 'Duwamish Revealed' project means to inspire river's revitalization
  • WA: Pre-statehood water rights curtailed in the Yakima Basin
  • WI: Scott Walker calls for dramatic rollback of EPA's role in regulating polluters

WETLAND SCIENCE

  • Study: Blue-green algae a growing threat to drinking water supply
  • Climate Change, Healthy Soils, and Holistic Planned Grazing: A Restoration Story
  • Pollinator Power: Nutrition Security Benefits of an Ecosystem Service
  • Importing Both Salamanders and Their Potential Destruction
  • Chesapeake Bay's underwater grass abundance rises 27 percent in 2014
  • Alaska's Permafrost is Burning. That's Not Good For You.
  • U-Michigan: Multiple factors may shape toxicity of Lake Erie cyanobacterial blooms
  • Agriculture and forest restoration could coexist - with proper planning
  • Drainage of Prairie Pothole Wetlands Can Increase Flooding and Degrade Ecosystems
  • Turtle Hotspots Identified Around the World Contain Diverse Species and Richness
  • Mangroves Help Protect Against Sea Level Rise
  • Thousands of salmon die in hotter-than-usual Northwest rivers

RESOURCES & PUBLICATIONS

  • Wetlands and Climate Change: Considerations for Wetland Program Managers
  • ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS: Efforts to Assess the Impact of Extreme Weather Events
  • Guidebook on Using Beavers to Restore Streams, Wetlands, and Floodplains Updated and Released
  • Uses of Monitoring and Assessment: Considerations for State and Tribal Programs
  • Report: "Green Infrastructure: Lessons from Science and Practice"
  • Tying Flood Insurance to Flood Risk for Low-Lying Structures in the Floodplains

POTPOURRI

  • Weed whackers: Monsanto, glyphosate, and the war on invasive species
  • The sand you're lying on could be 100 times more contaminated than the ocean
  • Lessons Learned from the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge
  • Economy Main Factor In US Emissions Decline
  • Use It or Lose It: Across the west, exercising one's right to waste water
  • Today's water laws encourage waste. Can big data help shape better ones?

WEBINARS, MEETINGS, TRAINING

Webinars

  • The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Project Spotlight webinar: Best Practices in Rural Ditches
  • ASWM’s Wetland Restoration Webinar: Stream/Wet Meadow Restoration
  • Maps and Datasets for Blue Carbon Habitats
  • American Water Resources Association webinar: Unique Program to Drive Water Quality in the Delaware River Watershed
  • Wetland Mapping Consortium (WMC): Part 2- “The Florida Wetlands Integrity Dataset: Analysis of nonrenewable energy data and construction of graph-theoretic networks to quantify landscape integrity” – September 16, 2015
  • Center for Watershed Protection webcast: What to Do About Trashy Watersheds
  • Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM) webinar: Developing & Implementing Dam Removal Projects
  • ASWM’s Members’ Wetland Webinar: Solar Project Siting and Wetland Permitting-September 29, 2015
  • AWRA webinar: History of Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment in the United States
  • EPA's Green Infrastructure Program 2015 Webcast Series: Winter Weather O&M for Green
  • National Park Service Ocean Parks Centennial
  • Center for Watershed Protection webcast: Checking in on Post-Construction Stormwater Management
  • EPA's Green Infrastructure Program 2015 Webcast Series: Ahead of the Curve – Implementing Green Infrastructure in Rural and Growing Communities

Meetings

  • Towards Resilient Ecosystems: Restoring the Urban, the Rual and the Wild
  • 4th Biennial Symposium of the International Society for River Science
  • Stockholm International Water Institute: 2015 World Water Week
  • Climate Resolve: California Climate Change Symposium: Using Climate Science to Plan for a Resilient Future
  • U.S. Water Alliance: One Water Leadership Summit
  • 2015 Floodplain Management Annual Conference
  • The Sixth Student Conference on Conservation Science - Bengaluru 2015
  • WETPOL 2015 - 6th International Symposium: Wetland Pollutant Dynamics and Control Annual Conference
  • Wetland Restoration and Training: Wetland Restoration Workshop
  • USDA and EPA are cosponsoring a National Workshop on Water Quality Markets
  • Transportation Research Board: International Conference on Transportation System Resilience to Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events
  • Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve, University of Wisconsin Extension workshop: Water Words that Work
  • San Francisco Estuary Partnership: State of the San Francisco Estuary Conference 12th Edition
  • Resource Institute, Inc.: Mid-Atlantic Stream Restoration Conference
  • Lacawac Ecology Conference
  • Moving the Needle Toward a Restored Bay Watershed
  • Water Environment Federation Technical Exhibition and Conference
  • 2015 Great Lakes Commission Annual Meeting
  • British Columbia Wildlife Federation's Wetlands Education Program: Communities Conserving Wetlands
  • Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition: 11th Annual Great Lakes Restoration Conference
  • From a Watershed Perspective: Integrating Science into Policy
  • 6th annual Student Conference on Conservation Science
  • Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation Office of Environmental Education Conference: What Lies Under Nature’s Bridge: Bridging the Classroom and the Outdoorsa
  • Society of Environmental Journalists: Weather, Water, Energy: News in Every Neighborhood
  • Villanova Urban Stormwater Partnership: 9th Stormwater Management Symposium
  • Huron River Watershed Council: 2015 Michigan Aquatic Restoration Conference
  • California Invasive Plant Council: 24th Annual Cal-IPC Symposium
  • 9th Biennial State of Lake Michigan and 15th Annual Great Lakes Beach Association Joint Conference
  • Natural Areas Association: 2015 Natural Areas Conference
  • 2015 Rising Seas Summit: Transforming Decision Making Developing Adaptive Infrastructure and Advancing Solutions
  • Sixth Annual Northwest Climate Conference
  • 13th Annual Ecological Genomics Symposium
  • Coastal Estuarine Research Federation Conference: Grand Challenges in Coastal & Estuarine Science; Securing Our Future
  • The Maryland Water Monitoring Council 21st Annual Conference: Protecting the Source - Sustaining Maryland’s Waters
  • Think Blue Maine Partner Maine Stormwater Conference
  • AWRA's 50th Annual Water Resources Conference
  • National Working Waterfront Network: National Working Waterfronts & Waterways Symposium
  • North American Lakes: Embracing their History, Ensuring Their Future
  • Society of Ecological Restoration, Southwest Chapter Annual Conference
  • American Geophysical Union (AGU): 2015 AGU Fall Meeting
  • American Society of Naturalists Conference: Unifying Biological Principles Across Disciplines
  • The 2016 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill and Ecosystem Science Conference: One Gulf: Healthy Ecosystems, healthy communities
  • 2016 Delaware Wetlands Conference: Advancing Wetland Science and Conservation in the Mid-Atlantic Region
  • Wisconsin Wetlands Association 21st Annual Wetland Science Conference
  • 2016 Climate Leadership Conference
  • Rocky Mountain Land Use Institute 25th Anniversary Conference: Western Places/Western Spaces: Examining the Past, Exploring the Future
  • Society for Applied Anthropology 76th Annual Meeting
  • 2016 AWRA Spring Specialty Conference

Training

  • FIRM Map Revisions - Technical & Administrative Aspects - 2015
  • Wetland Permitting Training
  • Identification of Grasses, Sedges, and Rushes
  • Vegetation Identification for Wetland Delineation: South
  • British Columbia Institute of Technology Wetland Restoration Course
  • Izaak Walton League’s Creek Freak environmental education workshop
  • Basic Wetland Delineation course
  • Wetland Delineation with Emphasis on Soils and Hydrology
  • The Original Environmental Compliance Bootcamp™
  • Riparian Habitat Restoration in the Arid Southwest
  • Stormwater Planning & Design Using SWMM - 2015
  • Basic Wetland Delineation Professional Course
  • Woody Plants (Trees, Shrubs, and Vines) Identification
  • Planning and Functional Design
  • Basic Wetland Delineation
  • Selecting Wetland Mitigation Sites Using a Watershed Approach
  • Jurisdictional Waters Delineation Training
  • The Swamp School Online Certified Wetland Hydrologist Class
  • Identification of Tidal Wetland Plants
  • Environmental Concern Course: Project WET 2.0
  • Basic Wetland Delineation eSession with Field Practicum
  • Methodology for Delineating Wetlands
  • Introduction to Wetland Identification
  • Overview of WQ Regulations and Compliance - 2015
  • Understanding Advanced Stormwater Management Techniques
  • Interagency Consultation for Endangered Species
  • Advanced Hydric Soils and Hydrology (Piedmont)
  • Problem and Atypical Wetland Delineation (Piedmont)
  • Floodplain Hydraulics Using HEC RAS - 2015
  • Statistical Downscaling of Global Climate Models in SDSM 5.2
  • Endangered Species Act Overview
  • WOW! The Wonders of Wetlands
  • POW! The Planning of Wetlands

SPECIAL EVENTS

  • Chestertown RiverFest
  • The Wetlands Institute: Wetland Wonderland

 

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Wetland Breaking News

The Association of State Wetland Managers' Wetland Breaking News (WBN) is a monthly e-newsletter. Wetland Breaking News is an edited compilation of wetland-related stories and announcements submitted by readers and gleaned from listservs, press releases and news sources from throughout the United States. WBN chronicles the legislative, national and state news relevant to wetland science and policy, wetland regulations and legal analysis of Supreme court cases from the past month; it also links to new publications and resources available to wetland professionals as well as events and training opportunities for those working in water resources and related fields. Wetland Breaking News has been published for over fifteen years and ASWM has been a think-tank and source for wetland science and policy news and discussion for over 30 years.

Wetland Breaking News August 2015The items presented in Wetland Breaking News do not necessarily reflect the views of the editor or of the Association of State Wetland Managers. Send your news items, comments, corrections, or suggestions to .

"WETLAND BREAKING NEWS" Compiled and Edited by Marla Stelk, Editor; Laura Burchill and Sharon Weaver, Assistant Editors. Executive Director: Jeanne Christie. Association of State Wetland Managers, 32 Tandberg Trail, Ste. 2A, Windham, ME 04062. Telephone: 207-892-3399 Fax: 207-892-3089

All photos by Jeanne Christie, ASWM

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