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Federal Stream Corridor Restoration Handbook (NEH-653)

To order a copy of the Federal Stream Corridor Restoration Handbook on CD, please contact Landcare or call 1-888-526-3227.

NEH-653 handbook cover

Suggested Citation: FISRWG (10/1998). Stream Corridor Restoration: Principles, Processes, and Practices.  By the Federal Interagency Stream Restoration Working Group (FISRWG)(15 Federal agencies of the US gov't). GPO Item No. 0120-A; SuDocs No. A 57.6/2:EN 3/PT.653. ISBN-0-934213-59-3.

Why "Stream Corridor Restoration"?

There's more to a stream than the rushing or meandering water.  A stream corridor, or stream valley, is a complex and valuable ecosystem which includes the land, plants, animals, and network of streams within it.  Recognition of the value of stream corridors has come with the understanding of what has been lost through uninformed or misguided actions on many streams and the watersheds that nourish them.

The U.S. has 3.5 million miles of rivers.  The 1992 National Water Quality Inventory of 642,881 miles of these rivers stated that only 56 percent fully supported multiple uses, including drinking water supply, fish and wildlife habitat, recreation, and agriculture, as well as flood prevention and erosion control.  In the remaining 44 percent of stream miles inventoried, sedimentation and excess nutrients were the most significant causes of degradation. Sediment problems result from soil erosion from watersheds and streambanks.

Today, interest in restoring stream corridors is expanding nationally and internationally, as indicated by increasing numbers of case studies, published papers, technology exchanges, research projects, and symposia. Stream corridors are increasingly recognized as critical ecosystems supporting interdependent uses and values.

This document was produced by the collective experience, skills, and technology of 15 Federal agencies of the United States government.  It is a benchmark document that is being used by these agencies, as well as many others who are interested in restoring the functions and values of the nation's stream corridors.