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N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources

NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Ecosystem Enhancement Program - History

Ecosystem Enhancement Program

 

EEP

 

EEP HISTORY

A Time For Change

To address this situation, a cooperative process-improvement initiative in North Carolina involving more than 10 state and federal natural-systems agencies convened in 2001. Obstacles identified in the initiative included inadequate communication, undefined roles and responsibilities, poor synchronization in executing existing mitigation and permitting processes, and a lack of clearly understood mitigation-success objectives.

This panel's conclusions led to recommendations that mitigation for NCDOT should be provided years in advance of project impact, and be designed to replace unavoidable functional losses to wetlands and riparian buffers. The panel also conceived and set into motion events leading to the creation of the Ecosystem Enhancement Program.

Over the subsequent two years, business and operational planning occurred that encompassed funding authorization, consensus-building with environmental- and mitigation-interest groups, legal support, regulatory-agency agreements, and transition plans for staffing and logistics. 
A Memorandum of Agreement among NCDOT, NCDENR and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Wilmington District established EEP's procedures on July 22, 2003.  (Note: In 2010, the MOA was superseded by a new legal document, or In-Lieu Fee Instrument, for the operation and use of EEP's In-Lieu Fee programs for stream and wetland mitigation.)  

                                                                     

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