Westervelt Ecological Services has received approval for Canoe Creek Mitigation Bank in St. Clair County, Alabama. The 237 acres project will improve plant and animal habitat by restoring wetlands and streams. The Bank has been approved by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to provide wetland and stream credits in the Middle Coosa watershed. These credits can be used for unavoidable impacts to waters of the United States which result from activities authorized under section 404 of the Clean Water Act.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources identifies the Coosa River Basin as “the largest and most biologically diverse sub-watershed of the Mobile River basin in terms of overall number of fishes, mussels and aquatic snails.” The basin is home to 147 fish species, including a number that are unique to the Coosa River basin. Among these are the Pygmy Sculpin, Holiday Darter, Coosa Darter, and the Coldwater darter.
The site is ideally positioned within the Coosa River Basin as a location for wetland and stream habitat restoration and will permanently protect and restore the structure and function of approximately 6,374 linear feet of stream and riparian buffer. Wetland restoration activities on CCMB will encompass 132 acres and includes the following habitat types: hardwood forested, riparian hardwood forested, and hardwood forested slope. These efforts meet conservation actions specified in the Alabama Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy (2005), to “improve water quality and habitat quality throughout the basin” and to “support habitat and riparian restoration.”
The Bank service area includes portions of Blount, Calhoun, Cherokee, Clay, Cleburne, Dekalb, Etowah, Jefferson, St. Clair, Shelby, and Talladega Counties that are within the Middle Coosa watershed (HUC 03150106) of the Coosa-Tallapoosa Basin. Mitigation outside of the 8 digit HUC will be allowed using the proximity multiplier method.
To learn more about the bank or the credits available please contact Michelle O’Neal at 1 (205) 562-5213.