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In 1969 the Virginia Institute of Marine Science published a report stating that although marshlands represented only one-half of one percent of the total area of the state, 95 percent of Virginia 's annual harvest of sport and commercial fisheries were dependent to some degree upon these valuable wetlands . The report went on to urge some form of public control over these vital areas in order to relieve some of the pressures created by dredging, filling, diking and bulkheading.

Recognizing the need to address this issue, the 1971 General Assembly passed House Joint Resolution Number 60, creating a Wetlands Study Comm1ss1on The Comm1ss1on, chaired by Russell M. Carneal, recommended the passage of strong wetlands legislation providing for a locally administered permit program . Partly as a result of this, the Virginia Wetlands Act (Title 62 .1, Chapter 2.1, Code of Virginia 1950) became effective in July of 1972 .

During the two years that have passed since the inception of the Act , Wetlands Boards have been established in twenty -four counties and cities in Tidewater . Available evidence indicates that the objectives of the Act are being attained .


Wetlands -- Law and legislation -- Virginia