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Land 2015, 4(1), 182-196;

Valuation of Ecosystem Services from Wetlands Mitigation in the United States

Louisiana State University Agricultural Center (LSU AgCenter), Red River Research Station, Bossier City, LA 71112, USA
Academic Editor: Audrey L. Mayer
Received: 8 October 2014 / Revised: 17 February 2015 / Accepted: 28 February 2015 / Published: 6 March 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecosystem Function and Land Use Change)
Full-Text   |   PDF [716 KB, uploaded 10 March 2015]


Section 404 of the U.S. Clean Water Act includes most wetlands in its jurisdiction and requires wetland mitigation to compensate for permitted wetland losses. These mitigation wetlands can provide ecosystem services similar to original wetlands if properly constructed. Improvement of wetland monitoring requirements coupled with economic assessment is critical for effective implementation of the mitigation policy. The economic assessment when left out of evaluation of mitigation policy could result in mitigation wetlands being given too little weight in policy decisions. Under the assumption that mitigation requirements reported in the Army Corps permit files represent actual wetland creation, ecosystem services value is estimated using a wetland benefit‑function transfer approach. Wetland mitigation requirements during 2010–2012 recorded in the Army Corps permit files is used for the analysis. The results indicate that cumulative ecosystem services value per acre per year is in the range of $5000 to $70,000, which translates to a nationwide annual aggregate benefit of $2.7 billion. Given the history of the ecosystem services not fully captured nor adequately quantified, the current analysis is an initial step in understanding the value of wetland mitigation. View Full-Text
Keywords: clean water act; wetland; ecosystem; mitigation; benefit function transfer clean water act; wetland; ecosystem; mitigation; benefit function transfer
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Adusumilli, N. Valuation of Ecosystem Services from Wetlands Mitigation in the United States. Land 2015, 4, 182-196.

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