Ray Feldmann(410)974-2316TDD: (410)333-3098
ANNAPOLIS, MD (January 28, 1998) -- Governor Parris N. Glendening today appointed a 26-member committee of key business, agricultural, environmental and government leaders to guide the State's efforts to restore approximately 60,000 acres of Maryland's lost wetlands.
Last year, Governor Glendening called for a voluntary cooperative effort to restore the tens of thousands of acres of Maryland's tidal and nontidal wetlands that have been lost since the 1940s, moving the State's goal from "no-net-loss" to one of "net-gain." Following the Governor's lead, the Chesapeake Bay Executive Council last fall issued a directive to the Bay states to set a "net gain" wetlands goal throughout the watershed.
"For the most part, our wetlands loss occurred prior to the public understanding of the many benefits of these swamps, bogs and marshes," Governor Glendening said. "Today, we recognize the economic as well as environmental role wetlands play. They provide protection from flooding, filter pollution from streams, rivers and the Chesapeake and Maryland coastal bays and provide valuable habitat for many important and diverse wildlife species."
The new State Wetlands Restoration Steering Committee will help guide the State's restoration efforts by identifying areas that would be suitable for wetland creation or restoration suitable for projects, working with landowners on innovative funding options, and launching an all-out effort to educate the public about the importance of preserving and restoring these important natural resources.
The Governor said the committee also will develop a wetlands conservation plan, identify priority protection and restoration areas, provide guidance and technical support for wetlands projects and recommend incentives for wetland creation.
"I am confident that the collective expertise of this steering committee will help us to restore our precious wetlands so that we can once again reap the benefits of these important environmental resources," Governor Glendening said.
Maryland currently has 600,000 acres of tidal and nontidal wetlands. Tidal wetlands are subject to tidal fluctuations and, generally, are covered or saturated with water according to the rise and fall of the tide. Nontidal wetlands are inland, freshwater areas and are usually covered or saturated with water for long periods of time during the growing season.
Members of the steering committee include:
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