Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2143222
 


 



Local Planning to Preserve Wetlands Assets: Community, Baselines, and Ecosystem Services


Keith H. Hirokawa


Albany Law School

September 7, 2012

BEYOND RAPANOS: THE NEXT GENERATION OF WETLAND REGULATION, Kimberly Connolly, ed. 2013
Albany Law School Research Paper No. 9 of 2012-2013

Abstract:     
Wetlands store and transport water, support plants and wildlife, provide transition areas between uplands and watercourses, capture waterborne sediments and pollutants, and help to recharge aquifers. These “ecosystem services” are critical to human survival and wellbeing. As such, when wetlands fail to function, often due to human destruction and enjoyment, we seek replacement services at an enormous cost. Healthy, functioning wetlands are assets, and the next generation of wetlands regulation must capitalize on these assets.

This essay explores the best regulatory structure for protecting wetlands assets based on the ecological economics of ecosystem services, an approach that attributes value to the goods and services provided by nature. Based on the controversies over mountaintop removal mining, this essay compares the current federal regulatory scheme to an alternative approach that recognizes the productive value of wetlands based upon the services they provide. Furthermore, this essay discusses the value of looking to local communities in order to determine the hidden values and valuable functions of wetlands, acknowledging that local communities possess valuable insights into the relationships between ecosystems and local needs. Finally, this essay highlights successful local involvement in assessing and protecting the value of wetland assets in Saratoga County, New York, the South Louisiana Wetlands Discovery Center, and Portland, Oregon.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 18

Keywords: wetlands, ecosystem, environmental law, natural resources law, ecosystem services, ecological economics, local government, local environmental law, zoning, land use planning

Accepted Paper Series





Download This Paper

Date posted: September 7, 2012  

Suggested Citation

Hirokawa, Keith H., Local Planning to Preserve Wetlands Assets: Community, Baselines, and Ecosystem Services (September 7, 2012). BEYOND RAPANOS: THE NEXT GENERATION OF WETLAND REGULATION, Kimberly Connolly, ed. 2013; Albany Law School Research Paper No. 9 of 2012-2013. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2143222

Contact Information

Keith H. Hirokawa (Contact Author)
Albany Law School ( email )
80 New Scotland Avenue
Albany, NY 12208
United States

Feedback to SSRN


Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 457
Downloads: 91
Download Rank: 169,878

© 2014 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo7 in 0.297 seconds