Category: News

Stream + Wetlands is providing compensatory wetland mitigation for unavoidable impacts associated with the construction of the NEXUS Gas Transmission Pipeline.  The 255-mile interstate natural gas transmission pipeline will deliver 1.5 billion cubic feet per day of clean-burning natural gas from receipt points in eastern Ohio to existing pipeline system interconnects in southeastern Michigan. The project will extend from southeast Michigan to Columbiana county in eastern Ohio. The construction of the 36-inch-diameter natural gas transmission line is expected to begin this fall.

The Ohio EPA granted a Water Quality Certification for the project on September 19, 2017 (read the press release here).  The Army Corps of Engineers and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved the project in August 2017.  The Ohio EPA certification requires NEXUS to have and implement very detailed contingency plans for managing unanticipated releases to the environment, such as inadvertent returns and a storm water pollution prevention plan to manage possible storm-water-related impacts to the environment.

Category: News

Stream + Wetlands Foundation, in conjunction with the Geauga Park District, has organized a field visit to the Pine Brook Wetlands Mitigation Bank on August 4. Jim Bissell, Director of Conservation & Natural Areas and David Kriska, Biodiversity Coordinator, both with the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, will be on hand to lead the tour which begins at 9:00 am.

The Pine Brook mitigation bank was approved by the Army Corps of Engineers on March 2009. It is the first approved mitigation bank in Ohio that generates compensatory mitigation credit primarily by the preservation of existing high-quality wetlands and associated upland buffers. The site encompasses more than 706 contiguous acres containing eight state-listed plant species and more than 450 acres of very high-quality wetlands.

Interested in joining us for this informative tour? Time is of the essence and space is limited.  Please contact Vince Messery at vmesserly@streamandwetlands.org.

Field Visit - Eblast B

Category: News

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (FWS) final 4(d) rule, which identifies Endangered Species Act (ESA) protections for the northern long-eared bat, went into effect on February 16, 2016. The northern long-eared bat has been protected as a threatened species under the ESA since April 2015 and this rule identifies prohibited activities in an effort to protect the bat’s sensitive life stages in areas affected by white-nose syndrome (WNS).

On April 25, 2016, the FWS announced that a determination was made that a critical habitat for the northern long-eared bat under the ESA was not prudent. When this species was listed as threatened under the ESA in 2015, it was determined that a critical habitat was practical, but not determinable. With additional information and a more in-depth analysis, that determination was re-evaluated and found that designating critical habitat would not benefit the species. To read the full press release, click here.

For more information about the northern long-eared bat and the determination on critical habitat, visit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife’s website at www.fws.gov/midwest/endangered/mammals/nleb.  For more information about white-nose syndrome visit www.whitenosesyndrome.org.

Category: News

On October 6, Vince Messerly, president of the Stream + Wetlands Foundation, was guest speaker at a breakfast meeting for the Home Builders Association of Greater Cincinnati. Messerly’s presentation “Compensatory Mitigation and New Waters of the U.S. New Regulation” provided details on compensatory mitigation for impacts to wetlands and streams and provided details on the new Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) regulations which took effect August 28. Messerly also discussed how the local offices of the Army Corp of Engineers will implement the regulations and what homebuilders need to know about the new WOTUS regulations and how current and future projects may affected.

 

 

Category: News

Stream + Wetlands president Vince Messerly will be a featured speaker at the Ohio Surface Water: Regulatory and Permitting Conference to be held Oct. 20 at the Renaissance Downtown Hotel in Columbus. The conference is sponsored by CLE International – a provider of continuing education programs throughout the United States and Canada. Their seminars focus on emerging legal issues and have received wide acclaim from bench and bar for the high quality of faculty (all of whom are recognized experts in their fields of specialty) and the efficient organization of detailed and useful information.
Messerly’s presentation “Mitigation Plans: Plan Preparation and Agency Review Process” will begin at 3:00 p.m. and discuss how a permit applicant and their consultant may work with the 401/404 permit reviewer to determine the best mitigation option for their project when more than one type of compensatory mitigation is available. This is in accordance with the 2008 Federal Compensatory Mitigation Rule (33 CFR parts 325 and 332) which established a hierarchy for wetland mitigation. While the hierarchy clearly establishes a preference for the use of mitigation banks, it also provides for the use of other compensatory mitigation options (if available) with approval of the mitigation plan at the discretion of the District Engineer (DE). The DE has several factors that he may consider when approving a compensatory mitigation plan.

For additional information about this informative presentation, contact Vince Messerly at Stream + Wetlands Foundation or Kerry Mason of CLE International at kerry@cle.com. When contacting Kerry, mention Messerly’s name and receive $100 off your registration fee for the conference.

Category: News

Aaron Van Ostran presented at the 2015 Ohio Stormwater Conference. He presented with Jackie Haynal from Jobes Henderson and Denise Crews with the City of Lancaster. The title of the presentation is “Deeds Wetlands and Floodplain Restoration: A passive and economic approach to floodplain and wetlands restoration.”

The presentation will present a case study of a restoration project for the City of Lancaster, funded by an Ohio EPA Storm Water Improvement Fund (SWIF). The goal of the project is to convert 58 acres of farm land along the Hocking River, separated by levees. A new berm was constructed, field tile disabled, microtopograhy restoration, levee breached, and minimal seeding. The project uses innovative engineering and construction methods to maximize the grant dollars and relies primarily on natural succession to promote habitat restoration.

Category: News

Stream + Wetlands Foundation’s project, Trumbull Creek wetlands mitigation bank, was featured in Greg Snowden’s presentation at the National Mitigation & Ecosystem Banking Conference in Orlando. The presentation, “Wetland Restoration Then and Now: A Tale of Progress in Design and Construction Techniques,” provided a comparison of historic and current wetlands restoration design within wetlands mitigation banks and restoration sites in Ohio. Snowden is a project manager and wetlands biologist for the Davey Resource Group – a division of The Davey Tree Expert Company. To read more about Trumbull Creek, click here.

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Category: News

The Ohio Wetlands Foundation was one of the first mitigation banking companies in the country and for more than 20 years, we have focused most of our efforts on developing successful wetland mitigation banks. In recent years, our stream mitigation program has grown and our mitigation options have expanded to include in-lieu fee mitigation. We are also currently working in other states including the Northeast Cape Fear Mitigation Bank in North Carolina.

With our expanded service offerings and now that we work in multiple states, we have changed our name to better reflect our reach and scope. We are very proud to announce that Ohio Wetlands has changed its name to Stream + Wetlands Foundation and we’ve launched a new website to showcase our services.

In addition to our new name, we are growing! We are pleased to announce the return of Aaron Van Ostran, P.E.. Aaron has more than 22 years of experience in engineering and managing projects and design teams from initial concept design through construction and monitoring to long term stewardship. As our Director of Operations, Aaron brings a strong background in large- and small-scale ecological restoration and mitigation projects to the Stream + Wetlands Foundation team from his previous work for the Ohio Wetlands Foundation and Jobes Henderson & Associates.

We are very proud of our first 23-plus years of existence as Ohio Wetlands Foundation and we look forward to continuing to serve our valued partners and clients and grow as the Stream + Wetlands Foundation. Our name may have changed, but our mission to protect, enhance and restore streams and wetlands has not.

Category: News

Stream + Wetlands (formerly Ohio Wetlands Foundation) is a proud supporter of the planned wetland restoration project on the Lancaster Sensory Trail.  The project will include a boardwalk structure that will surround the proposed 1.2-acre wetland. The boardwalk will make it possible for limited-mobility trail users and students from Forest Rose School (which is adjacent to the site) enjoy the restored wetland and the wildlife utilizing it.

The Friends of the Lancaster Sensory Trail, an established not-for-profit group, has completed the multi-use sensory trail that is an extension of the Lancaster bike path, and the largest universally accessible tree house in Ohio. Both projects were completed with donations, grants and in-kind assistance. For more information, click here.

Category: News

Stream + Wetlands’ President Vince Messerly was interviewed for a recent article in the Cincinnati Enquirer about the cost of wetlands mitigation. The article, which ran on Oct. 2, discussed how the cost to replace wetlands, a federal requirement, is viewed by some to be an expensive endeavor. To read the article in its entirety, click here.

Messerly presents to Home Builders Association

On October 6, Vince Messerly, president of the Stream + Wetlands Foundation, was guest speaker at a breakfast meeting for the Home Builders Association of Greater Cincinnati. Messerly’s presentation “Compensatory

Messerly featured in mitigation article

Stream + Wetlands’ President Vince Messerly was interviewed for a recent article in the Cincinnati Enquirer about the cost of wetlands mitigation. The article, which ran on Oct. 2, discussed