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Researchers Say Buffers and Careful Development Can Protect Delaware Wetlands

Posted: 12/12/2017 07:50:00 -05:00 Updated:

DOVER, Del.- Much of Delaware is comprised of wetlands and researchers with the state's environmental department say careful development choices can protect them.

Alison Rogerson, an environmental scientist with the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Enviromental Control's watershed assessment team, said many riverine wetlands lack buffers between man-made structures.

"We have issues with development, cutting roads through wetlands that impair the hydrology---how wetlands can hold water," she said.

In locations like the Saint Jones Watershed, which surrounds many communities in central Delaware, Rogerson said the wetlands act as an effective, natural way to deal with things like flooding and other issues.

"They clean our water as water filters through them," she said.

Places like Tidal Wetlands, located out at the Saint Jones Preserve and at the end of the Saint Jones River near Bowers Beach also need buffers from roads and other buildings, Rogerson said.

If they don't?

"Then they eventually get skinnier and skinnier until they get squeezed out and when that happens we have no barrier against dangerous tidal energy."

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