Monday, June 06, 2005

Wetlands Policy All Wet

The St Petersburg Times found that the federal agency charged with regulating wetlands in Florida doesn't keep up with how many acres are being lost. And they don't keep track of projects that are supposed to balance out the lost wetlands either. Reporters used satellite images to do what the Corps of Engineers hasn't been doing. The paper reported:

"The [C]orps approves more permits to destroy wetlands in Florida than any other state, and allows a higher percentage of destruction in Florida than nationally."

Since 1990, the Corps is charged with creating a new acre of wetlands every time they allow developers to detroy one. The Times staff found that since the policy took effect, Florida has lost a net total of 84,000 acres of Florida wetlands.

The series also details how developers pressure Congress members to speed up permits for wetland destruction. (St Petersburg Times -- HT: IRE)

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