Clean Water Act Fines Have Increased!

In the May 2, 2018 Federal Register, the Department of the Army, Corps of Engineers (COE) issued a final rule that increased the penalties for violations of the Clean Water Act (CWA).  The COE periodically adjusts these fines for inflation in accordance with the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 2015.  This minimal annual increase follows the more significant “catch-up” increase implemented in 2016 to ensure that these fines are substantial enough to actually discourage violations.  You can read more about the 2016 increase in our August 2016 Field Notes article.

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Robins are one of many species protected by the MBTA photo credit: American Robin (Turdus migratorius) by mdf via Wikimedia Commons

Don't Harp About Project Delays! Schedule Harperella Surveys Now to Avoid Them


As we approach the mid-summer months, our environmental scientists are preparing for another season of harperella (Ptilimnium nodosum) surveys.  This small, endangered member of the carrot family lives along larger rocky creeks in Virginia, Maryland, and North Carolina.  If you have projects in these states, you can minimize impacts to your project schedule by having Wetland Studies and Solutions perform a harperella habitat evaluation or survey early in the development process – preferably within the July 1 to September 30 field survey window.  

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No New Forest Conservation Measures in Maryland - Senate Bill 610 Fails to Pass House

water stargrass

After passing in the Maryland Senate on March 28, the amended Senate Bill 610 did NOT pass in the House - which means no new forest conservation measures in Maryland at this time. 

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8th Annual Reston Kids' Trout Fishing Day Recap

example of suitable mussel habitat

On March 24, 130 kids and their families filled the banks of Snakeden Branch in Reston for the 8th Annual Reston Kids’ Trout Fishing Day.  The largest fish caught was 17 inches – and only one child tried to save his fish as a pet this year!  This event offered a unique opportunity for kids to experience the outdoors and learn about our local natural resources as they fished a section of the stream that Wetland Studies and Solutions restored in 2009.

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