Article courtesy of Summit County Citizen Voice Staff Reporter | April 15th, 2016 | Summit County Citizen Voice | Shared as educational material.
Recently, the EPA conducted its first national check on the condition of wetlands around the U.S. What they found was that over 50% of the wetlands weren’t in healthy conditions. Around thirty percent are in fair condition while the latter twenty percent are in “poor” condition. What is a wetland? Well, wetlands are areas where water covers the soil or is present either at or near the surface of the soil all year or for varying periods of time during the year, including during the growing season. Wetlands are extremely important because they provide a safe habitat for wildlife and reduce the effects of pollution and flooding. Disturbances such as contamination and soiling can be deleterious to the health of a wetland. After the report, organizations are taking steps forward to preserve wetlands.
“America’s wetlands are vital for reducing water pollution, reducing flooding, providing habitat for fish and wildlife, offering recreational opportunities, and contributing goods to the economy,” said Joel Beauvais, deputy assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Water. “We know that protecting our wetlands is a critical component of adapting to climate change impacts like flooding and managing pollution and nutrients damaging our country’s water quality,” Beauvais said.
In order to find the depth of the wetland pollution, the EPA along with various partners conducted the National Wetland Condition Assesment. It is used to document the changes in the multitude of wetlands around the United States for a period of over thirty years. These tests and surveys help scientists get a better understanding of the direness of the wetland pollution situation. Hopefully, it will allow individuals and companies that are looking to restore the wetlands with effective ways to do so. Read more about the issue revolving wetlands here.