RICHMOND, VA, Feb. 3, 2014 -- A national consortium of leaders from the business, governmental, non-profit, and regulated community was recently formed to concentrate on enhancing and expanding market-based opportunities for improving water quality.
Troutman Sanders LLP established the National Water Quality Trading Alliance (NWQTA), as it is named, that will work to support comprehensive and coherent government rules and policies on trading as well as the development of new and existing state and regional trading markets, while serving as a platform to advance the science and ecological effectiveness of water quality trading.
Since the EPA released its Water Quality Trading Policy in 2003, trading has experienced a rapid evolution from concept to practical reality in projects all across the country. This activity has the potential to accelerate the scope and pace of water quality restoration and serve as an essential tool for water quality compliance. Further, the NWQTA will help realize this potential by bringing together interested stakeholders from a range of different sectors, including mitigation bankers and other market entrepreneurs, conservation and agricultural NGOs, consultants, regulated entities, and state and federal regulators.
"This group will fill a breach at the national level by bringing together leaders who are committed to advancing the integrity, scientific rigor and defensibility of water quality trading. The Alliance will serve as a central champion, convener and catalyst that will enhance market-based mechanisms for protecting our nation's waters," said Brooks Smith, a partner with Troutman Sanders in the firm's Environmental group and a member of the Troutman Sanders team working for the new Alliance.
The formation of the NWQTA coincides with and will complement the strategic partnership for water quality trading recently announced by EPA and USDA, as well as the newly-formed National Network which is focused on developing principles, options and best practices for water quality trading.
The NWQTA is anchored by a diverse and growing group of founding members that presently includes the American Farmland Trust, Chesapeake Bay Nutrient Land Trust, Ecosystem Insurances Associates, LLC, Ecosystem Services Exchange, the Electric Power Research Institute, Environmental Banc & Exchange, Kieser & Associates, Restoration Systems, the Freshwater Trust, the World Resources Institute, the Willamette Partnership, and the U.S. Water Alliance. The NWQTA also anticipates working closely with federal and state agency partners on trading initiatives and engaging in opportunities to share and learn from their perspective.
About Troutman SandersA
Troutman Sanders LLP is an international law firm with more than 600 lawyers and offices located throughout North America and Asia. Founded in 1897, the firm’s lawyers provide counsel and advice in practically every aspect of civil and commercial law related to the firm’s core practice areas: Corporate, Energy and Industry Regulation, Environmental and Natural Resources, Finance, Litigation and Real Estate. Firm clients range from multinational corporations to individual entrepreneurs, federal and state agencies to foreign governments, and non-profit organizations to businesses representing virtually every sector and industry. For more information, visit troutmansanders.com