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Wetlands Protection

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NEWS
April 9, 1995
Thumbing its nose at good science and common sense, a U.S. House committee has voted to virtually eliminate federal wetlands protection, unless the government pays the landowner. an insult to the environment and the national commonweal, a "polluter's bill of rights," as one congressman put it.Under the pretense of flexibly pruning cumbersome federal regulation, the Republican-engineered measure would repeal significant provisions of the 23-year-old Clean Water Act that has done much to preserve vital wetlands, force major improvements in wastewater treatment and attack nonpoint runoff pollution of the nation's waters.
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NEWS
By Nicole Fuller | nicole.fuller@baltsun.com | March 29, 2010
Anne Arundel County's largest tract of continuous forest , the South River Greenway, has added another 73 acres in a step toward expanding protection of the sensitive wetlands, county officials said. The state Board of Public Works approved the acquisition of the 62-acre Dorothy Boehm property this month, along with an additional 11 acres, using Maryland Program Open Space funds. The expansion adds to the Bacon Ridge Natural Area, located within the nearly 4,000-acre Greenway in Crownsville, which runs on both sides of the South River.
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NEWS
By Phillip Davis | October 2, 1990
State regulations for some wetlands on farm property will be eased next year, after changes in federal policy, Torrey C. Brown, secretary of natural resources, said yesterday.The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said last week that it would no longer regulate certain wetlands that had been farmed before December 1985. That action freed many landowners here and around the country of the need to obtain special permits from the corps to develop their land in accordance with federal law on clean water.
NEWS
By Tom Horton and Tom Horton,SUN STAFF | February 11, 2005
Finally, growth in your county is coming to the peninsula where you've lived in bucolic bliss, fishing and crabbing and bird-watching along the edges of tidal river and bay. As local officials and developers explain their plans, your spirits rise. They're showing more environmental sensitivity then anyone expected. They promise not to touch any of the extensive wetlands. But what's more, they will maintain an inviolable buffer of open space around them of a thousand feet - far more than required.
NEWS
May 2, 2004
County should protect wetlands in Odenton The Sun's article regarding the planned Odenton Town Center cited the surprise of a county official at the opposition from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) and others to the wetlands impacts of an Odenton development ("Groups oppose filling wetlands for town center," April 22). This single project will destroy more than 7 acres of high-value forested wetlands, 4 acres of which are for a parking lot. Wetlands are critical to the health of streams, rivers and the Chesapeake Bay. They filter polluted water, reduce downstream flooding, and maintain base flow to streams during drought.
NEWS
May 10, 1997
WHEN THE Army Corps of Engineers gave Maryland the authority last year to decide on permits for wetlands destruction, there was much celebration of streamlining the regulatory process.Now, five environmental groups have served official notice they will sue the federal government for delegating that blanket authority, charging that the move "will cause tremendous harm to Maryland wetlands and waters."They claim that Maryland approves 90 percent of wetlands-loss permits without even a public hearing, that enforcement is lax and the inspection effort by the Department of the Environment has declined.
NEWS
By John A. Morris and John A. Morris,Staff Writer | December 15, 1992
A developer who wants to build 71 homes on the West River attempted to show the county Board of Appeals last night that the project will comply with county environmental rules.Despite residents' statements to the contrary, an attorney for BMCN Joint Venture said the county is requiring the developer to install extensive storm water controls, pay $91,000 to replant trees cut down and limit impervious surfaces to 25 percent. The county even "required us to scale down the size of the homes we wanted to build," said attorney Bruce Krain.
NEWS
By William G. Laffer III | July 30, 1991
THE DEFINITION of a "wetland" might seem like an obscure and unimportant detail buried harmlessly in mountains of government regulations. In reality, the federal government's current definition affects most landowners in the country, depriving them of the use of their property without compensation.Under federal regulations, for example, a Colorado farmer was indicted for redirecting a river, which had been diverted onto his land, back into its original bed. A Pennsylvania man was jailed for cleaning up tires in his backyard and using fill dirt as the base for a garage.
NEWS
By Kris Antonelli and Kris Antonelli,SUN STAFF | October 1, 1999
A south county citizen group, determined to block plans for a Safeway store in Deale, is still hounding the Army Corps of Engineers for a public meeting to allow community residents to voice concerns about wetlands protection and the threat of flood damage.South Arundel Citizens for Responsible Development (SACReD) opposes building a store and a shopping center at routes 256 and 258 because members claim it would destroy sensitive shoreline and create acidic runoff that could contaminate waterways.
NEWS
By From staff reports | September 28, 1990
Eastern Shore landowners are smiling and environmentalists are frowning over yesterday's U.S. Army Corps of Engineers decision to back off from controversial rules protecting up to 75 percent of freshwater wetlands in Maryland.The corps yesterday relaxed construction restrictions on farmed wetlands, a shift that could affect as much as 700,000 acres of Maryland's 1 million acres of non-tidal wetlands.The decision was intended, the Army said, to allow regulators to concentrate efforts on the most vital wetlands.
NEWS
May 2, 2004
County should protect wetlands in Odenton The Sun's article regarding the planned Odenton Town Center cited the surprise of a county official at the opposition from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) and others to the wetlands impacts of an Odenton development ("Groups oppose filling wetlands for town center," April 22). This single project will destroy more than 7 acres of high-value forested wetlands, 4 acres of which are for a parking lot. Wetlands are critical to the health of streams, rivers and the Chesapeake Bay. They filter polluted water, reduce downstream flooding, and maintain base flow to streams during drought.
NEWS
By Kris Antonelli and Kris Antonelli,SUN STAFF | October 1, 1999
A south county citizen group, determined to block plans for a Safeway store in Deale, is still hounding the Army Corps of Engineers for a public meeting to allow community residents to voice concerns about wetlands protection and the threat of flood damage.South Arundel Citizens for Responsible Development (SACReD) opposes building a store and a shopping center at routes 256 and 258 because members claim it would destroy sensitive shoreline and create acidic runoff that could contaminate waterways.
NEWS
January 15, 1998
A FEDERAL COURT DECISION overturning Army Corps of Engineers protection of invaluable wetlands itself must be reversed, or there will be dramatic consequences for the Chesapeake Bay.For decades, developers have argued that the federal law used by the corps to regulate all wetlands applied only to "navigable" waters, those related to transportation. That position has not prevailed in various legal cases.But a three-judge appellate panel last monthdeclared "invalid" the corps' authority over most freshwater wetlands in Maryland, Virginia and the rest of the mid-Atlantic district.
NEWS
June 21, 1997
State efforts weaken wetlands protectionIn response to Secretary Jane T. Nishida's May 24 letter the Chesapeake Bay Foundation must respectfully disagree with her conclusion as to the effectiveness of the state's wetlands protection program. These are the facts based upon the Maryland Department of the Environment's (MDE) own reports:In 1995, MDE authorized 57 acres of losses of natural wetlands. These losses were nearly double the average annual authorized losses of 30 acres for the previous five years.
NEWS
May 24, 1997
THE MAY 10 editorial, ''Federal protection for wetlands,'' painted an inaccurate picture of the current status and management of Maryland's wetlands.First, the facts show that Maryland's wetlands receive greater protection today than ever before. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has estimated that Maryland lost wetlands at an average of 617 acres per year from 1982 through 1989. In 1996, under the Maryland Department of the Environment's stewardship, only 53 acres of wetland impacts were authorized through the regulatory program.
NEWS
May 10, 1997
WHEN THE Army Corps of Engineers gave Maryland the authority last year to decide on permits for wetlands destruction, there was much celebration of streamlining the regulatory process.Now, five environmental groups have served official notice they will sue the federal government for delegating that blanket authority, charging that the move "will cause tremendous harm to Maryland wetlands and waters."They claim that Maryland approves 90 percent of wetlands-loss permits without even a public hearing, that enforcement is lax and the inspection effort by the Department of the Environment has declined.
NEWS
April 27, 1997
AFTER THREE General Assembly sessions, Gov. Parris N. Glendening can claim some notable successes and few failures. He has kept to his campaign priorities and remains focused on his prime goals -- education, law enforcement, the environment and economic development.Yet along the way, the governor has encountered skepticism. Legislators remain puzzled by his tendency to exclude them from crucial decision-making, to vacillate on occasion and to go it alone. County executives have found him difficult to deal with unless they threaten to withhold support on key issues.
NEWS
January 15, 1998
A FEDERAL COURT DECISION overturning Army Corps of Engineers protection of invaluable wetlands itself must be reversed, or there will be dramatic consequences for the Chesapeake Bay.For decades, developers have argued that the federal law used by the corps to regulate all wetlands applied only to "navigable" waters, those related to transportation. That position has not prevailed in various legal cases.But a three-judge appellate panel last monthdeclared "invalid" the corps' authority over most freshwater wetlands in Maryland, Virginia and the rest of the mid-Atlantic district.
NEWS
April 27, 1997
AFTER THREE General Assembly sessions, Gov. Parris N. Glendening can claim some notable successes and few failures. He has kept to his campaign priorities and remains focused on his prime goals -- education, law enforcement, the environment and economic development.Yet along the way, the governor has encountered skepticism. Legislators remain puzzled by his tendency to exclude them from crucial decision-making, to vacillate on occasion and to go it alone. County executives have found him difficult to deal with unless they threaten to withhold support on key issues.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,Sun Staff Writer | May 10, 1995
WASHINGTON -- A national panel of scientists urged Congress yesterday to uphold federal protections for wetlands, noting that marshes, bogs and even drier lands help clean up Chesapeake Bay and other waterways.In a report released as the House prepares to vote on amending the federal Clean Water Act, a 17-member panel assembled by the National Research Council said the federal system for identifying and protecting wetlands is basically sound. The research council is an arm of the National Academy of Sciences, which Congress commissioned two years ago to study controversial government restrictions on farming and developing wetlands.
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