Note: Most states have enacted laws and regulations to protect wetlands. In many cases, these rules are established to define the state's role in the "§404 permit/§401 certification process." This process involves the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and your state environmental agency. To learn more about the wetlands permitting process go to the CICA Wetlands Regulations/Permit page.
How Are Wetlands Activities Regulated by Nebraska? The Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) regulates wetlands under the state's water quality standards under its § 401 water quality certification authority. In particular wetlands are monitored according to provisions in chapters 3, 4, and 5 of Title 117 and Title 120. DEPs Planning Unit administers the Section 401 Water Quality Certification Program.
Wetlands. Wetland means "areas that are inundated or saturated by surface or groundwater at a frequency and duration sufficient to support, and that under normal conditions do support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soil conditions." Wetlands include swamps, marshes, bogs, and similar areas.
Wetland Categories. The DEQ regulates surface-water overflow wetlands and isolated wetlands. Surface-water overflow wetlands are connected to an adjacent stream or lake on a regular or periodic basis. They provide beneficial uses that are similar to the adjacent steam or lake. Water quality criteria associated with assigned beneficial use of adjacent water bodies is applied to surface water overflow wetlands. Isolated wetlands do not have a regular or periodic surface connection to an adjacent stream or lake. These wetlands are created from ground water or surface runoff. Isolated wetlands are protected for the beneficial uses the state recognizes for wetlands.
Regulated Wetland Activities. Any human activity causing water pollution that significantly degrades the biological integrity of wetlands. Human activities causing water pollution that create significant adverse impacts to identified key species are prohibited. Wastes or toxic substances introduced directly or indirectly by human activity that degrade the agricultural use of the state's water supply. Human activities that cause noxious odors; floating, suspended, colloidal, or settleable materials that produce objectionable films, colors, turbidity, or deposits; and the occurrence of undesirable or nuisance aquatic life.
Exempt Wetland Activities. Activities within artificial wetlands constructed for wastewater treatment, wastewater retention, or irrigation use are exempt.
Water Environment Federation. The WEF Web site provides access to a wetlands related technical discussion area, as well as publications and other information on wetlands.
Wetlands Regulation Center. The Wetlands Regulation Center Web site contains information on laws, policies and regulations concerning activities regulated under Sections 401 and 404 of the Clean Water Act.
Association of State Wetland Managers. The Association of State Wetland Managers Web site provides information on wetlands news and events, including new regulations/legislation, upcoming conferences and events, publications, and more.
Society of Wetland Scientists. The Society of Wetland Scientists Web site provides access to on-line scientific wetlands journals and a wetlands discussion forum, as well as information on upcoming wetlands conferences and events.
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