Our overall guidance, called Wetland Guidance for CAO Updates, describes the important topics that should be addressed in the wetlands section of a critical areas ordinance (CAO). Our guidance includes a version for Eastern Washington and another for Western Washington.
Both include recommendations for wetland protection based on best available science, such as wetland buffers and mitigation options.
The guidance also includes a sample chapter for wetlands that incorporates these recommendations into a format similar to many local CAOs and contains definitions commonly used in wetlands regulations.
This guidance revises the wetland-specific provisions in the Department of Commerce's Critical Areas Assistance Handbook. For assistance with other aspects of a critical areas ordinance update, please contact the Department of Commerce's Growth Management Services.