United States
                   Environmental Protection
                                           Office of Water (WH-556F),
                                           Office of Wetlands, Oceans,
                                           and Watersheds (A-104 F)
March 1993
                   WETLANDS FACT SHEET #30
                   Partnerships with  Landowners
                 All ethics so far evolved rest upon a single premise: that the
           individual is a member of a community of interdependent parts. His
           instincts prompt him to compete for his place in the communityf but his
           ethics prompt him also to co-operate (perhaps in order that there may
           be a place to compete for). The land ethic simply enlarges the bound-
           aries of the community to include soils, waters, plants, animals, or
           collectively, the land.
                             - Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac
          There is a real and increasingly popular
    opportunity to strengthen wetlands protection
    by fostering innovative public/private partner-
    snips and promoting landowner participation
    in voluntary wetlands stewardship programs.

          These programs address individual and
    community economic and quality of life issues.
    Wetlands conservation has positive, long term
    impacts on the  environment commerce, and
    quality of life. In contrast, continued wetland
    loss has negative impacts on water quality,
    biodiversity, the economy, and human health
    and safety.
     Ownership of Wetlands in US
          Approximately 75% of the remaining
    wetlands in the lower 48 States are privately
    owned. Recently, much of the national focus on  nate programs that assist private landowners in
    wetlands protection has been on regulatory pro-  conserving and managing wetlands nationwide.
                                               grams.  However, regulatory programs only
                                               provide partial protection. In contrast, there are
                                               numerous voluntary programs in the public
                                               and private sector that provide educational,
                                               technical, and financial assistance to private

                                                     Private landowner assistance and part-
                                               nership programs among government, non-
                                               profit and private interest groups are areas of
                                               growing national interest.  The potential for
                                               voluntary programs to protect wetland resources
                                               is being recognized by Federal, State, and local
                                               governments. EPA has actively promoted land-
                                               owner assistance and partnership  programs
                                               through activities such as American Wetlands
                                               Month, Audubon's America, the EPA Wetlands
                                               Hotline*, and a multiagency pilot project pro-
                                               moting voluntary wetlands programs in the
                                               State of Maryland.

                                                     Other States and regions have indicated
                                               a strong interest in initiating a program similar
                                               to the Maryland program, including EPA Re
                                               gion VI, and the States of Arizona and Oregon.
                                               EPA is also participating in the initiation of an
                                               interagency wetlands marketing initiative by
                                               the USD A Soil Conservation Service. EPA is
                                               developing a strategy to publicize and coordi-
     FOR MORE INFORMATION:  Private Landowner's Wetlands Assistance Guide: Volun-
     tary Options for Wetlands Stewardship in Maryland available from the EPA Wetlands
     Hotline* at 1-800-832-7828