Wetlands are important but fragile ecosystems. They control pollution and flooding, contain unique plant species, provide habitat for wildlife, and offer recreation and education opportunities. It is important to protect and enhance wetlands to preserve these ecosystem services.
The Northern Mariana Islands feature a variety of wetlands, including lakes, ponds, estuaries, marshes, swamps, streams, and mangroves. These ecosystems are “areas of particular concern” which means that development and uses in these areas requires additional environmental review to ensure that no significant impacts occur to CNMI’s coastal resources. Because of the benefits they provide, all developments in wetland areas must preserve or enhance these systems.