Compensatory Mitigation Webinar Series

This is the third of four webinars to assist permit reviewers in evaluating the potential for compensatory wetland mitigation proposals to achieve ecological objectives planned for the summer of 2018. Webinars 3 will provide greater insight into wetland hydrology, soils and biology (primarily plants). Webinar 4 will provide a framework for using the information in the first three webinars to evaluate a proposal for compensatory mitigation. 

To View Past Compensatory Mitigation Webinar Series, click here.

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If you haven’t used Go To Webinar before or you just need a refresher, please view our guide prior to the webinar here.

An Ecological Framework for Reviewing Compensatory Mitigation Plans: Plan Review (Part 4 of 4)

Thursday, March 21, 2019 - 2:00 p.m. ET



  • Steve Martin, Environmental Scientist, Institute for Water Resources, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • Michelle Mattson, Environmental Scientist, Institute for Water Resources, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • Michael S. Rolband, P.E., P.W.S., P.W.D., Wetland Studies and Solutions, Inc.
  • Karen Greene, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA Fisheries)


Over the past three decades compensatory mitigation has become an important strategy for addressing the adverse environmental impacts that result from dredge and fill activities. Compensatory mitigation projects should be designed to replace lost ecological services at an alternative location by either the permitee or a third party in a mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program.  Federal and State regulatory and resource agency staff routinely review these proposals to ensure that projects will achieve the desired outcomes.  But what exactly should compensatory mitigation project reviewers consider in evaluating a proposal? The purpose of the fourth of four webinars is to help plan reviewers evaluate whether a project as proposed is likely to achieve its objectives by examining some of the most important aspects of a project. Examples (including both successful and less than successful projects) from riverine, palustrine freshwater and coastal projects will be provided to highlight the importance of site selection, water budgets, soils, monitoring, adaptation, and resiliency in evaluating a restoration plan.


Steve MartinSteve Martin, Environmental Scientist, Institute for Water Resources, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Steve Martin is an environmental scientist with the Corps’ Institute for Water Resources (IWR). His focus is on compensatory mitigation, including third party compensatory mitigation (mitigation banks and in-lieu fee programs). He provides technical and policy support to HQ USACE and Corps districts on compensatory mitigation. Much of his work has focused on education of Corps, federal, and state agencies in administrative and ecological aspects of compensatory mitigation. He also is the Corps’ national technical lead for RIBITS (Regulatory In-lieu fee and Bank Information Tracking System). Before coming to IWR he was a senior environmental scientist in the Norfolk District Regulatory Branch. He oversaw development and operations of a number of commercial mitigation banks.

Michelle MattsonMichelle Mattson, Environmental Scientist, Institute for Water Resources, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Michelle Mattson is a stream and wetland ecologist with over 20 years of professional experience as a consultant and regulator. Michelle is a compensatory mitigation subject matter expert (SME) and the IWR Regulatory Team budget manager. She supports national and regional training courses in compensatory mitigation and has spent her career in the field working with restoration teams to design, install and monitor restoration projects and programs. At the USACE, Michelle worked across agencies to develop the Advanced Permittee-Responsible Mitigation (APRM) Program for San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) and managed multiple banks and ILFs. As a consultant, she worked on two Special Area Managements Plans (SAMPs), the Otay River Watershed Management Plan, and several Mitigation Banks and ILF sites and multiple large-scale stream restoration projects in alignment with existing and planned USFWS habitat conservation plans (HCPs) and new SDRWQCB water quality requirements. She was a member of the California Wetland Monitoring Workgroup Level 2 (rapid assessment) Committee and was the first to use CRAM in evaluating impacts, alternatives analysis, and monitoring compensatory mitigation to improve decision making in LA District for several large alternative energy projects. Michelle remains a huge supporter of using functional and conditional assessments in regulatory and restoration practices including in informing the location and design of sites to short- and long-term monitoring performance and condition of sites.

Michael S. RolbandMichael S. Rolband, P.E., P.W.S., P.W.D., Wetland Studies and Solutions, Inc.

Michael (Mike) S. Rolband is the founder of Wetland Studies and Solutions, Inc. (WSSI), a 175+ person natural and cultural resources consulting firm headquartered in Gainesville, Virginia, and a subsidiary of The Davey Tree Expert Company. Mike founded WSSI in 1991 and pioneered its growth and expansion from the one-person wetlands consulting firm, to the multi-discipline natural and cultural resource consulting firm that today operates from four offices focused on permitting and regulatory requirements for the Clean Water Act, Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act, and Stormwater.

Mike is responsible for development of the first wetlands bank in Virginia in 1994 and the first mitigation bank to provide stream credits in Virginia in 2001. He also formed a non-profit to manage the Wetland Research Initiative, a research program that has funded $3.6 million in grants to several universities since 2007 – dedicated to advancing the state of the science of Mitigation. Between mitigation banks and permittee-responsible mitigation, WSSI has designed over 1,000 acres of wetland mitigation and over 280,000 linear feet of stream restoration projects.

Mike has served on the Chesapeake Bay Local Assistance Board and many state and local committees dealing with the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act, stormwater regulations, and wetlands/stream regulations. In 2017 he accepted an appointment as a part-time Professor of Practice in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Cornell University, and now invests his time and expertise teaching graduate students about the design and challenges of wetlands and stream restoration projects. Mike is an alumnus of Cornell, where he obtained his BS in Civil and Environmental Engineering, Master of Engineering (Civil), and MBA.

Karen GreeneKaren Greene, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA Fisheries)

Karen Greene is the Mid-Atlantic Field Offices Supervisor for NOAA Fisheries Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office’s (GARFO) Habitat Conservation Division and is also the GARFO Essential Fish Habitat Coordinator. She has been with NOAA Fisheries for more than 25 years, working primarily in the Mid-Atlantic region, especially in New York, New Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania. Her primary focus has been to provide advice and guidance to federal agencies on avoiding, minimizing and offsetting adverse impacts to coastal fish habitats through a number of consultation authorities such as the Magnuson Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act. Karen has been involved in the evaluation of compensatory mitigation plans for more than two decades and participated on many interagency review teams (IRTs) for wetland mitigation banks, including the Meadowlands Interagency Mitigation Advisory Committee originally convened in 1998, as well as the IRTs for the first federally approved mitigation banks in NJ and NY. Karen is co-located at the NOAA Fisheries Northeast Fisheries Science Center at their James J. Howard Marine Science Laboratory at Sandy Hook, NJ. She has a BS and MS in Environmental Science, both from Rutgers University.

A Certificate of Participation to be used toward Continuing Education Credits will be available for ASWM webinars. Go here for more Information.

To View Past Compensatory Mitigation Webinar Series,
click here.