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Land & Biodiversity

Wetland and Stream Mitigation: A Handbook for Land Trusts

When planned development activities are determined to result in unavoidable impacts to wetlands and streams, the entity responsible for causing the damage is required to restore, create, enhance, or preserve other land to offset those losses. These ‘compensatory mitigation projects’ must be provided long-term protection. Land trusts — the nation’s land stewardship professionals — may be best suited to provide the long-term stewardship of these sites. But with mitigation projects come significant staffing demands and varying degrees of exposure to risk for land trusts.

This new handbook provides the land trust community with a framework for rigorously evaluating the liabilities associated with mitigation projects. Produced by the Environmental Law Institute in partnership with the Land Trust Alliance and with support from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Wetland and Stream Mitigation: A Handbook for Land Trusts (2012), provides land trust professionals with the tools they need to determine whether and to what degree they should get involved in restoration and protection projects that are linked to the federal (and in some cases state) wetland and stream compensatory mitigation program.

Wetland and Stream Mitigation: A Handbook for Land Trusts

Additional resources on this topic are below. In addition to these resources, The Learning Center, the Land Trust Alliance’s digital library for land trust members and partners contains a large number of documents specifically written to support the land trust community.

Land Trust Mitigation Policy Example
Standards and Practices Curriculum
Land Trust Standards and Practices
Resources on Wetland and Stream Compensatory Mitigation
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Model Site Protection Instruments and Long-Term Management Plans

Land Trust Mitigation Policy Example
Land Trust Standards and Practices Curriculum
  • Amundsen III, Ole M. 2001. “Strategic Conservation Planning.” Standards and Practices Curriculum. Ed. Sylvia Bates. Land Trust Alliance.
  • Bouplon, Renee J. 2008. “Conservation Easement Stewardship.” Standards and Practices Curriculum. Ed. Sylvia Bates. Land Trust Alliance.
  • Brown, Hugh and Andrew Pitz. 2009. “Caring for Land Trust Properties.” Standards and Practices Curriculum. Ed. Sylvia Bates. Land Trust Alliance.
  • Doscher, Paul, Brenda Lind, Ellen Sturgis and Chris West. 2007. “Determining Stewardship Costs and Raising and Managing Dedicated Funds.” Standards and Practices Curriculum. Ed. Sylvia Bates. Land Trust Alliance.
  • Hamilton, Jane Ellen and Jonathan Moore. 2007. “Evaluating and Selecting Conservation Projects.” Standards and Practices Curriculum. Ed. Sylvia Bates. Land Trust Alliance.
  • Hamilton, Jane Ellen. 2008. “Conservation Easement Drafting and Documentation.” Standards and Practices Curriculum. Ed. Sylvia Bates. Land Trust Alliance.
  • Hocker, Jean. 2008. “Mission, Planning and Capacity.” Standards and Practices Curriculum. Ed. Sylvia Bates. Land Trust Alliance.
  • O’Donnell, MaryKay and Monica Henderson. 2009. “Acquiring Land and Conservation Easements.” Standards and Practices Curriculum. Ed. Sylvia Bates. Land Trust Alliance.
  • Ratley-Beach, Leslie. 2009. “Managing Conservation Easements in Perpetuity.” Standards and Practices Curriculum. Ed. Sylvia Bates. Land Trust Alliance.
  • Sohl, Kay and Eric Rowley. 2009. “Financial Management of Land Trusts.” Standards and Practices Curriculum. Ed. Sylvia Bates. Land Trust Alliance.
Land Trust Standards and Practices
  • Land Trust Alliance. 2004. Land Trust Standards and Practices.
  • Practice 1A. Mission
  • Practice 1B. Planning and Evaluation
  • Practice 6A. Annual Budget
  • Practice 6B. Financial Records
  • Practice 6E. Internal System for Handling Money
  • Practice 6F. Investment and Management of Financial Assets and Dedicated Funds
  • Practice 6G. Funds for Stewardship and Enforcement
  • Practice 7A. Capacity
  • Practice 8B. Project Selection and Criteria
  • Practice 9A. Legal Review and Technical Expertise
  • Practice 9C. Environmental Due Diligence for Hazardous Materials
  • Practice 11A. Funding Easement Stewardship
  • Practice 11B. Baseline Documentation Report
  • Practice 12A. Funding Land Stewardship
  • Practice 12C. Land Management
Resources on Wetland and Stream Compensatory Mitigation
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Model Site Protection Instruments and Long-Term Management Plans