Wetland Economics

Why Are Wetlands Important?

We are all connected to wetlands! Some of us live near them, and some of us visit them. Still others are connected to wetlands by way of the storm drains in their streets. Storm water flowing into these drains later flows into streams and rivers, then on into wetlands. Litter and oil carelessly dropped in the streets will follow this same direct path into wetlands.


Wetlands Distribution Circa 1780’sWetlands Distribution Circa 1980’s


Nationally, we have lost more than half of our wetlands. Most of this depletion occurred in the last century, due to draining and development of the land for homes, farms, businesses, and highways. By 1995, only 46% of original wetland acreage remained in the continental United States.

This loss has had a negative impact upon the wildlife that relies on wetlands for survival. When plants and animals are squeezed into smaller places to live, they begin to die and can even become extinct.

The loss of these wetlands has also had a measurable negative financial impact on the citizens of this country.

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