Wetland & stream mitigation may be required as part of a US Army Corp of Engineers Section 404 permit or as part of a state environmental permit. The mitigation effort is an environmental offset where the impacts to a wetland or stream affected by a built project are offset by restoring, enhancing, rehabilitating, creating or preserving a wetland or stream in another location.
Mitigation can generally be divided into two categories:
- Permittee-Responsible Mitigation (PRM), where the entity receiving authorization to impact wetlands (the permittee) is directly responsible for performing the mitigation and generating the environmental offsets for the impacts.
- Mitigation Banking, where the entity receiving authorization to impact wetlands compensates a 3rd party (the mitigation banker) to provide offsets. The banker typically generates these offsets at a relatively large site that is capable of generating offsets for a number of individual projects. Then the offsets are sold as mitigation credits to individual permittees.
There are additional variations on banks, including in-lieu fee programs, single-client banks and others. These tend to follow the banking model, with some modifications.
Cypress has extensive experience with wetland and stream mitigation. Our staff have worked within the regulatory system as well as private consulting providing our clients with our unique perspective on the process. Cypress completed restoration and obtained 100% credit release for the first three banks in USACE Mobile District. We have completed analysis of wetland and stream banks across many USACE Districts. As of January 2021, we have over 75 completed mitigation bank projects and contracts in the Gulf of Mexico, South Atlantic and Pacific regions of the United States.
Texas Flat Mitigation Bank (Mobile District): 1985-acre wetland and stream mitigation bank. Cypress completed all environmental surveys, permitting, design, and construction management.
Little Biloxi River Mitigation Bank (Mobile District): 180-acre wetland and stream mitigation bank. Cypress completed all environmental surveys, permitting, design, and construction.
Turtleskin Creek Mitigation Bank (Vicksburg District): 2740-acre wetland and stream mitigation bank. Cypress completed prospectus development, permitting, and conceptual design for stream and wetland restoration.
Private Client (Savannah District): Stream mitigation bank. Cypress completed technical and financial analysis of the bank for a prospective buyer, generating a corrected set of pro-forma financials and evaluated feasibility of project performance and schedule.