Water: Polluted Runoff
Wetlands and riparian areas typically occur as natural buffers between uplands and adjacent water bodies. They act as natural filters of nonpoint source pollutants, including sediment, nutrients, pathogens, and metals, to waterbodies, such as rivers, streams, lakes, and coastal waters. It is important to preserve and restore damage to wetlands and riparian areas because these areas can play a significant role in managing adverse water quality impacts. Wetlands and riparian areas help decrease the need for costly stormwater and flood protection facilities.
Information Resources and Centers
- Stream Restoration Documents
This is a list of stream restoration documents that the Nonpoint Source Control Branch at EPA headquarters has found to be especially well done.
- River Corridors and Wetlands Restoration
- Wetlands Runoff
A hub page on wetlands, wetland legislation, information for landowners, and much more.
Guidance Documents and Manuals
- National Management Measures to Protect and Restore Wetlands and Riparian Areas for the Abatement of Nonpoint Source Pollution
This guidance document is intended to provide technical assistance to state, local, and tribal program managers and others on the best available, economically achievable means of reducing nonpoint source pollution of surface and ground water through the protection and restoration of wetlands and riparian areas, as well as the implementation of vegetated treatment systems. Inquiries may be sent to Christopher Solloway (firstname.lastname@example.org) of EPA's Nonpoint Source Control Branch.
- Management Measures for Wetlands, Riparian Areas, and Vegetated Treatment Systems.
- Ecology Restoration: A Tool to Manage Stream Quality
- Stream Corridor Restoration Handbook
This document was produced by the collective experience, skills, and technology of 15 Federal agencies of the United States government. It is a benchmark document that is being used by these agencies, as well as many others who are interested in restoring the functions and values of the nation's stream corridors.
Fact Sheets and Reports
- Nonpoint Pointer No. 11 - Managing Wetlands to Control Nonpoint Source Pollution.
- Riparian Buffer Width, Vegetative Cover, and Nitrogen Removal Effectiveness: A review of current science and regulations
Report summarizes existing scientific literature on the effectiveness of riparian buffers to improve water quality through nitrogen removal.
- Riparian Areas: Functions and Strategies for Management
The National Research Council has carried out an extensive study on riparian areas. The scope and results of this study are available in this pre-publication on-line document.
- Center for Watershed Protection Wetlands and Watersheds Article Series
Series of six articles designed to provide guidance to local communities on how to integrate wetlands into larger watershed protection efforts.