Help Protect Salem's Wetlands and Flood Plains

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In acknowledging the impact of increasing climate change on our country and particularly on coastal communities, therefore, we, the undersigned citizens of Salem, request that the Salem City Council direct that:

Salem’s Wetlands Protection and Conservation Ordinance, Chapter 50 – Wetlands Protection and Conservation, and the Flood Hazard Overlay District Ordinance, Section 8.1, are reviewed and provide ordinance amendment language to ensure: 

1. Creation of both a “no build” and “do not disturb” 100-foot buffer zone for our wetlands and 100-year year flood zone for flood plains.  Encroachment into our wetlands and flood plains is a negative impact on our environment and sustainability. Chapter 50 

2. No inclusion of wetlands and their buffers and flood plains in calculations for zoning and construction permitting, since using these areas in those permitting calculations further threatens the viability of these essential environmental characteristics because of the consequences of proximity and encroachment.  Chapter 50

3. Prohibition of construction within our floodplains and wetlands, and their respective buffers so that our coastal shoreline, rivers, and environmentally essential wetlands and vernal pools continue unimpeded to provide their integral mechanisms for protecting our community from rising sea levels, climatic disturbance, and increasing storm impacts, along with drought and flood. Section 8.1

We, the undersigned citizens of Salem, request that this review be accomplished, and proposed amendment language be submitted to the Council by December 1, 2020.