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SPDR S&P Regional Banking ETF Message Board

  • kabtb kabtb May 11, 2011 6:43 PM Flag

    How paving over wetlands hurts the banks

    Wetlands are a vital flood and drought control, when they get paved over by "development" the result often ascerbates an already serious water problem by increasing floods and/or droughts, and often the result is a half built development with homes that have shifting foundations, cracked walls, serious mildew damage and have, well, flood and drought problems. Vital recreation and fishing and hunting grounds are destroyed, and as soon as news gets out of just a few homes like that no one buys, so these fly by night developers abandon the property, which leaves already hard pressed communities and towns with huge problems.

    The banks get stuck with the losses, and maybe they deserve it for ever approving loans for such developments in the first place. The history of paving over wetlands and the consequences is there for anyone to see, and simple guidelines may be all that is needed to prevent and avoid the worst of the losses.

    Yet the practice continues, and no one who stays around in these areas benefit. After enormous costs, problems for the community, and surrounding housing values and economies suffering, the end result is often that somehow the town finds a way to tear up whatever wetlands development is there and simply returns it to a wetlands.

    These are vital watersheds, and part of our water problems is due to developers and loan officers run amok with paveovers of wetlands like this, and it can easily be avoided with simple standards banks can impose on their loan officers.

    BTW, by the time the problem becomes acute, the developers, who are often fly by night types, have already mailed in the keys and maybe left the community and State, to try to do it elsewhere perhaps. The large housing developers are also to blame for some of their wetlands paveovers, but at least they stay around and might be forced to compensate homeowners with unstable foundations, and maybe they should be held liable to any community which has been hurt by such things. They might even change someday and simply stop doing it, though this last round of overdevelopment sure didn't see that.

    There is nothing wrong with some housing in swamps, but the way they pave over wetlands is leaving us with serious water problems.

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