Stream Restoration Provides Valuable Habitat

by admin on July 19, 2010

Stream Restoration actually encompasses more than just the rushing or meandering water that you see between the stream banks.  We actually are more concerned with the entire "stream corridor."  So, when we say stream restoration, just know that we're actually talking about "stream corridor restoration." 

Stream Corridor

A stream corridor, or stream valley, is a complex and valuable ecosystem which includes the land, plants, animals, and network of streams within it.  Recognition of the value of stream corridors has come with the understanding of what has been lost through uninformed or misguided actions on many streams and the watersheds that nourish them.

The U.S. has 3.5 million miles of rivers.  The 1992 National Water Quality Inventory of 642,881 miles of these rivers stated that only 56 percent fully supported multiple uses, including drinking water supply, fish and wildlife habitat, recreation, and agriculture, as well as flood prevention and erosion control.  In the remaining 44 percent of stream miles inventoried, sedimentation and excess nutrients were the most significant causes of degradation. Sediment problems result from soil erosion from watersheds and streambanks.

Alabama SWaMP Land seeks to preserve and restore our streams by establishing stream mitigation projects that more than compensate for stream that is destroyed during the land development process.

References: Stream Corridor Restoration

J. Keith Maxwell, PE&LS, is the principal/manager for Pro17 Engineering and is the project engineer for Alabama SWaMP Land.

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