EPA Regulation Of Streams And Wetlands

Feb 11, 2020
The Wilma H. Schiermeier Olentangy River Wetland Research Park at Ohio State University.
Ohio State University

In January, the EPA released its proposal to revise how the federal government regulates streams and wetlands in the United States

Proponents say the rule change increases clarity and restores private property rights while environmentalists worry about the many streams and wetlands that could lose federal protections.

Many business interests are cheering President Trump's recent rollback of water regulations put in place by the Obama administration. But companies that make money protecting clean water could take a big hit.

Updated at 3:20 p.m. ET

The Environmental Protection Agency is dramatically reducing the amount of U.S. waterways that get federal protection under the Clean Water Act — a move that is welcomed by many farmers, builders and mining companies but is opposed even by the agency's own science advisers.

The Cuyahoga River has come a long way since the fire 50 years ago. But it still faces an environmental threat in the form of stormwater and development.  

Rainwater rolling off asphalt and rooftops can carry contaminants into the watershed. Local government agencies across Northeast Ohio have laid out rules for developers to limit the harmful effects of stormwater.


Researchers recently announced the discovery of over 7,000 grass carp eggs in a Lake Erie tributary. The good news? This isn’t the Asian carp species we’re trying to prevent from entering the Great Lakes.

The bad news? Grass carp pose a different threat. 

According to the Ohio EPA, 90% of Ohio’s historic wetlands have been destroyed.  New research from the University of Waterloo in Canada shows wetlands play a bigger role than we thought in protecting water from harmful fertilizer nutrients like phosphorus and nitrogen.

Wetlands have several roles –they provide wildlife habitat, they hold water and reduce flooding, and they help filter nutrients in water running off the landscape.

Rover Pipeline Spill and Ohio's Wetlands

Apr 25, 2017
Triangle Lake Bog State Nature Preserve
Bisnicks / Wikipedia Commons

The Rover Pipeline, which when completed will run from Washington County in southeast Ohio to Defiance in the northwest, was the source of a major spill. More than 2 million gallons of drilling mud was dumped into two Ohio wetlands. While the mud is naturally occurring, experts say the spill could be detrimental to the ecosystems of the already depleted wetland ecosystems.

Wetlands are crucial to the health of the environment, serving as natural incubators and purifiers, but over 90 percent of Ohio's wetlands have disappeared over the past several decades due to human activity. Today we'll take a look at how pipelines impact the environment, what will be done as a result of the spill and the state of Ohio's wetlands.

Friends of the Sawmill Wetlands Facebook

The state is appealing a judge's decision that would allow commercial development of an 18-acre wetlands area surrounded by roads, houses and parking lots in booming suburban Columbus.

Wetlands: The Kidneys of the Ecosystem

May 21, 2015
Public Domain Images

Between 2004 and 2009, roughly 62,300 acres of wetlands were lost in the continental United States, according to the EPA. Coming up, the role of wetlands, and the efforts to keep them healthy, from Lake Erie to the Florida everglades.

10:00 This weekend, the Ohio State Buckeyes will play Michigan State for a shot at the Big Ten title. First up this hour, we'll look back with author Bill Rabinowitz at OSU's undefeated season, and talk about what lies ahead for the team. Guest: Bill Rabinowitz, reporter for the Columbus Dispatch, author of "Buckeye Rebirth: Urban Meyer, an Inspired Team, and a New Era at Ohio State." 10:20-11:00 As college students brace for finals week, earth's wetlands are undergoing an evaluation of their own.

Once Spring arrives, snow melt and spring rains create seasonal wetlands, and with them, a lush world that exists for only a few months each year. Thousands of different organisms comprise what are called "vernal pools." But they are disappearing. Ninety percent of these forms of wetlands in Ohio have disappeared over the course of the last 200 years.

Local wetland tackles big projects

Jul 7, 2005

A thirty acre wetland in Columbus could provide help in the fight against pollution in the Gulf of Mexico a thousand miles away. The Olentangy River Wetlands Park near the OSU campus is looking to find ways to prevent pollution in both local rivers and in the Mississippi River Drainage Basin.