Wetland Mitigation

wetland-mitigation

Wetland Mitigation Experts

Wetland and stream mitigation have become a more important component of energy, transportation, and commercial development projects as land suitable for mitigation becomes less available. The ability to effectively offset wetland impacts, both ecologically and legally through the regulatory permitting process, is imperative to allow development impacts and to meet the mandate of no net loss of wetland habitats.

Achieving the proper balance between the human and natural environments is critical to continued intelligent development. Steigers has designed, implemented, permitted, and monitored numerous wetland mitigation projects and understands the complexities and nuances that determine project success. Steigers maintains staff with the expertise needed to provide our clients with comprehensive wetland mitigation services.

Experience and Skills

  • Site Selection Using Reference Wetlands or Stream Reaches
  • Initial Site Assessment & Feasibility Analysis
  • Goal Development by Watershed Position & Wetland Type or Function
  • Determination of Wetland Credits
  • Conceptual Plan & Design Development
  • Functional Assessment/Lift Analysis
  • Water Budgeting
  • Development of Success Criteria/Performance Standards
  • Construction Oversight & Monitoring/Reporting
  • Regulatory Compliance & Permitting
  • Wetland Banking & Site Protection Instruments
  • Adaptive/Long-Term Management Plans
  • Securing Financial Assurances

Mitigation in Practice

Steigers specializes in all aspects of wetland mitigation including permittee-responsible wetland mitigation, wetland mitigation banking, in-lieu fee or other state-sponsored wetland mitigation programs, and compensatory mitigation as required for compliance with the Clean Water Act. Steigers has proven successful in guiding clients through implementation of the wetland mitigation process, identifying lowest-cost mitigation solutions, and navigating the associated regulatory requirements.

Site Selection

Selecting an appropriate site for use as wetland/stream mitigation is critical to mitigation plan development. Numerous factors need to be analyzed prior to site selection, feasibility, and the conceptual design phase. Critical site components such as water rights, general site constraints, project goals (economics), and existing site conditions must be thoroughly evaluated during a feasibility analysis. Our experience has taught us what to look for and to accurately assess the significance of this preliminary information.

Success Criteria

Developing the appropriate success criteria for a wetland/stream mitigation project is paramount to achieving a client’s goals. Correctly answering the following questions will dictate project design and will ultimately dictate wetland mitigation project success. Using the three criteria (hydrology, hydric soils, hydrophytic vegetation) specified by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, does the site exhibit conditions to restore/enhance/create a wetland? What constitutes appropriate and adequate vegetative cover? What is the legal process to permit and protect the site? Are water rights available for the site guaranteeing hydrology? What is the realistic targeted wetland/stream credit to be achieved?

Wetland Mitigation Implementation

Steigers provides comprehensive wetland mitigation design and construction services.

  • Site selection
  • Initial site assessment
  • Feasibility analysis: hydrology analysis/water rights
  • Baseline wetland delineation
  • Conceptual through final design plans
  • Determining passive or active restoration of a site
  • Pre-& post-construction functional assessment/lift analysis
  • Site grading & infrastructure plans
  • Biological, chemical, & physical wetland alteration
  • Revegetation plans
  • Target species habitat design
  • Regulatory compliance & permitting
  • Construction oversight
  • Monitoring & reporting

Functional Assessment

Steigers’ staff specialize in wetland functional assessments and implementing projects to maximize functional lift.

  • Increasing site structural diversity
  • Developing wildlife habitat
  • Enhancing habitat for state- or federally-listed species
  • Reducing invasive species
  • Developing fish habitat
  • Increasing flood attenuation and surface water storage
  • Promoting sediment, nutrient, and toxicant removal
  • Stabilizing stream banks
  • Providing food chain support
  • Developing groundwater recharge/discharge
  • Promoting recreational use