Wetland Law & Policy


Course Details

This course can only be taken as part of the Certificate in Wetland Science & Management.

Get Program Details

About this Course

This course shifts the focus from the science of wetlands covered in the autumn quarter to the legal framework that regulates wetlands and other natural resources in Washington state. We'll review land use laws in the United States and then advance to an in-depth overview of federal, state and local regulations, as well as tribal concerns, that apply to wetlands and aquatic and terrestrial habitats. You’ll learn about environmental review and permitting requirements, and how to access resources for permit applications from regulatory agencies. We’ll also explore conflicting perspectives of different stakeholders in various natural resource permitting scenarios, and you'll be challenged to examine and defend various advocacy positions.


  • The history and current status of various federal regulations relating to wetlands and aquatic resources
  • State and local land use laws related to natural resources and the complexity of issues that determine regulations
  • A methodical approach to determining which agencies and laws (federal, tribal, state and local) have jurisdiction over a given site
  • A comprehensive understanding of the wetlands and aquatic resources permitting process
  • How to identify and navigate conflicting perspectives representing different stakeholder interests in wetlands and their management


  • Practice determining jurisdiction and reviewing permit application requirements through case study reviews
  • Conduct an in-depth review of nationwide permit programs and associated federal, state and local laws

Program Overview

This course is part of the Certificate in Wetland Science & Management.

  Get our email newsletter with career tips, event invites and upcoming program info.       Sign Up Now