Maine Department of
The Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT)
has proposed creating an Umbrella Wetland Mitigation Bank being reviewed by the
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the agency overseeing federal wetland laws.
If approved by the Corps, MDOT would be able to fill wetlands far more easily
than the Clean Water Act anticipated. Of particular concern, portions of
Sears Island might be proposed to the Corps as "credits" to mitigate wetland
alteration or destruction elsewhere by MDOT projects. All proposals to the
Corps must adhere to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act and are open for public
comment and involvement.
The MDOT mitigation proposal fails to
(1) provide specific required information, (2) demonstrate MDOT qualifications
as a bank sponsor and (3) substantiate the claim that the bank would provide
appropriate compensatory mitigation. The proposal should therefore be
As for Sears Island, the Joint Use
Planning Committee, is simply reviewing possible on-island options for wetlands
mitigation, nothing will be evaluated or reccomended.
Read comments submitted
to the Army Corps of Engineers regarding the proposed bank by:
Chapter Sierra Club
Penobscot Bay Alliance