Swamp Swaps: The 'Second Nature' of Wetlands

72 Pages Posted: 21 Sep 2009 Last revised: 19 Mar 2014

See all articles by Fred Bosselman

Fred Bosselman

Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago-Kent College of Law (Deceased)

Date Written: September 21, 2009


American wetlands were once valued only as sites for their own destruction. Today markets are increasingly assigning values to intact wetlands for purposes such as mitigation, water quality protection, rare species support, greenhouse gas diminution, and biofuel production. Federal law has tried to protect wetlands’ wetness but offers few guidelines for wetland use. Market-oriented regulation may encourage efficient use of wetlands, but only if newly-forming markets can quickly acquire the confidence of investors who are suspicious after recent market failures. New wetland management techniques may produce real benefits, and are worth encouraging as long as large areas of natural wetlands are protected.

Keywords: wetlands, carbon market, methane, mitigation bank

JEL Classification: K32

Suggested Citation

Bosselman, Fred, Swamp Swaps: The 'Second Nature' of Wetlands (September 21, 2009). Chicago-Kent Intellectual Property, Science & Technology Research Paper No. 09-018, Environmental Law, Vol. 39, No. 577, 2009, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1476436

Fred Bosselman (Contact Author)

Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago-Kent College of Law (Deceased)

565 W. Adams St.
Chicago, IL 60661-3691
United States

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