Posted: Apr 2, 2013 8:21 PM by Evan Weborg - MTN News
Updated: Apr 3, 2013 7:48 AM
Trout Unlimited and the Montana Department of Environmental Quality are teaming up to restore Montana wetlands.
The groups have formed a new non-profit called Montana Aquatic Resources Services (MARS).
The collaboration will provide an option for landowners, businesses, and developers to offset the cost to unavoidable damages to wetlands.
MARS gives them the option of buying credits that can be used to repair other nearby streams or wetlands.
Lynda Saul of the DEQ Source Water Protection Program explained, "This program is going to ensure that Montana doesn't lose these high quality aquatic features, these wetlands and streams, and will provide health quality and wildlife habitat by restoring these aquatic resources."
Patrick Byorth of Trout Unlimited said, "From Trout Unlimited's perspective, providing another source of restoration and another incentive to restore stream channels is going to benefit our fisheries; not just the cold water trout fisheries but the warm water fisheries and streams throughout the state."
Before MARS, landowners didn't have a non-profit option of buying credits, instead they had to do the repair work themselves or purchase credits through a mitigation bank.