Florida's constructed wetlands: The effects of their failures on existing ecosystems

Date of Award


Document Type

Capstone Project


Environmental Policy & Mgmt

Degree Name

Master of Applied Science


Environmental Policy And Management


William Robinson


Constructed wetlands; Constructed wetlands -- Florida; Failed mitigation projects; Florida failed wetland projects; Florida mitigation projects; Man-made wetlands; Mitigation projects; Section 404; Wetland ecology -- Florida; Wetland mitigation -- Florida; Wetland restoration -- Florida; Wetlands


Florida's wetlands have been drained and filled for purposes of urban development, farmland and other development activities necessary for human survival. Like the Clean Water Act's Section 404, 33 U.S.C. 1344, the State of Florida's wetland mitigation rules can be interpreted as guidelines with options to offset adverse impacts as a result of unavoidable wetland losses, rather than firm requirements with stipulated penalties. The combination of ambiguous wetland mitigation rules, inadequate planning and design and lack of long-term effective monitoring have led to many constructed wetland projects failure. Constructed wetland failures have led to ecological effects such as flooding, loss of important wildlife species and introduction of invasive species. However, recommendations to improve the Florida's wetland mitigation rules are provided.

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