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Wetland Planning and Conservation

Waterway and Wetland Conservation

Oregon currently has approximately 1.4 million acres of wetlands, over 100,000 miles of rivers and streams, 1,400 named lakes, 360 miles of coastline, and an additional 3,800 ponds and reservoirs. However, extensive historical agricultural and urban development greatly affected the extent and quality of Oregon’s waters and wetlands. Oregon’s tidal and non-tidal wetlands once covered as much as 2.3 million acres in the late 1700s (Dahl 1990). While landscape-scale changes have provided significant socioeconomic benefits for several generations of Oregonians, they have eliminated and degraded vast areas of streams and wetlands needed by future generations. 

Despite this historical loss of natural resources, Oregon has a more recent history of protecting its waters and wetlands. Though there has been a decrease in the rate of loss, ongoing development and land use activities continue to threaten and degrade these resources. Cumulative effects of continuing small losses are compounded by the fact that functions and biological quality are often impaired and significantly degraded on remaining resources.  Therefore, continued protection, conservation and best use of the water and wetland resources of the state are vital to the economy and well-being of the state and its people.

Local wetland planning and inventories

Local governments inventory and include protections for resources listed in Oregon's land use planning goals 5 (Natural Resources), 16 (Estuaries) and 17 (Coastal Shorelands). The Department of State Lands' aquatic resource planner works with local governments and the Department of Land Conservation and Development (DLCD) to provide both technical and planning assistance to local governments that are completing inventories and other related tasks. Goal 5 wetland compliance includes using inventory information about the locations, type and functional capacity of wetlands within the city or county to make development planning decisions.

City and county planners use wetlands inventories to determine when to send a wetland land use notice to DSL. The response to this notice provides planners and applicants with information about the likelihood that wetlands and waters are in the project area, and if a removal-fill permit may be required for the proposed project.

DSL is responsible for developing and maintaining the Statewide Wetland Inventory (SWI). For more information see the “Wetlands inventories" tab below and the Statewide Wetlands Inventory



Fees & payment

Wetland delineation report fee is $466.

Resubmittal of a previously rejected report (if initial fee was paid) is $100.

Send checks to:
775 Summer St. NE Suite 100 
Salem, OR 97301-1279


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