Is there a long-term plan to protect wetlands? Stetson hosts workshop


The ELI-Stetson Wetlands Workshop first panel discussion featured environmental experts (L-R) Professor Royal Gardner, Jenny Thomas, Greg DeYoung, John Emery, and Bob Polin.

Stetson University College of Law in Gulfport, Florida, hosted a workshop Nov. 12 with invited experts to discuss long-term mechanisms to protect wetland mitigation sites.

The third annual ELI-Stetson Wetlands Workshop featured panels and breakout sessions with speakers including leaders from federal and local governments, NGOs, and mitigation banks discussing long-term financing and legal protection of wetland mitigation sites.

The theme of the workshop was “Wetlands Mitigation and Long-term Stewardship: Financial Challenges and Title Issues.”

Jenny Thomas, economist with the Office of Wetlands, Oceans and Watersheds at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, presented the Edward and Bonnie Foreman Biodiversity Lecture as part of the workshop.

“Long-term stewardship is also essential to ensure the continued performance and protection of a mitigation site,” said Thomas. “The impacts that compensatory mitigation projects are intended to offset are permanent, so we must ensure that the mitigation is also permanent.”

This year’s workshop also featured a field trip to a nearby wetland mitigation site. The Environmental and Land Use Law Section of the Florida Bar co-sponsored the event.

AUDIO: Lecture by Jenny Thomas: “Long-Term Stewardship – Lessons from California Mitigation Banks”