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Developer settles with EPA after destroying Provo wetlands

Release Date: 12/06/2006
Contact Information: Monica Heimdal 303-312-6359, heimdal.monica@epa.gov Wendy Silver 303-312-6637, silver.wendy@epa.gov



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 6, 2006
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Denver. Colo, Dec. 6, 2006 -- Pettro Properties, LLC has agreed to pay a civil penalty of $9,500 for destroying more than nine acres of wetlands in Provo, Utah.


    In addition, Pettro will pay $15,500 to The Nature Conservancy for use in the Conservancy’s Lower Hobble Creek Restoration Project. The Conservancy is striving to protect endangered June Sucker habitat at Utah Lake.

    Pettro will also perform wetlands compliance training at a cost to the company of $10,000, preparing and presenting a seminar for local real estate development trade associations and environmental firms in Salt Lake City regarding Clean Water Act requirements.

    Assistant Regional Administrator Carol Rushin said, “EPA is taking these actions to prevent the pollution of the wetlands, streams, and lakes of Utah and to provide deterrence against future violations of Federal laws designed to protect valuable water resources.”

    The wetlands destroyed by Pettro were part of the Provo Bay Wetland Complex and tributary to Utah Lake through a series of natural channels and ditches. Pettro was developing a light industrial park when it filled them, permanently eliminating 9.39 acres of wetlands.

    The creeks, streams, rivers and adjacent wetlands in this area are important as habitat for wildlife, water storage and retention, and flood control. Placing dredged or fill material in creeks, streams, rivers, or wetlands can have adverse impacts on fish and wildlife habitat and can adversely impact the plants or insects they rely on as food sources. Damaging or destroying wetlands can lead to serious results such as increased flooding, a decline of water quality and extinction of species.

    A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ permit is required before performing any work that results in discharges of dredged or fill material into waters of the United States, which include lakes, rivers, streams and wetlands. Property owners, contractors or developers planning to do work in such waters need to contact the Corps of Engineers’ regulatory office in Bountiful, Utah, at 801-295-8380 before they begin work to determine if they need a permit.

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