Because the regulators aren’t focused on the environment, but on the humans who might be inclined to interact with it. If humans promise to be good, they can get away with crap.
Here are the conditions a permittee has to agree to in order to mess with the shores of a little creek in Coastal Georgia:
1. No fish cleaning will be permitted over coastal marshlands. Signs will be posted prohibiting these activities.
2. Permittee may be required to provide a post-construction survey. Such survey shall comply with the Georgia Plat Act O.C.G.A. 15-6-67 et.seq.
3. Floating docks may not rest on the bottom at low tide and must be supported on pilings or by cradle at least two feet above the mud.
4. During the placement of the cultch materials, equipment, other than what is required to perform the work, materials, or debris may not be placed in, disposed of, or stored in marsh jurisdictional areas.
5. The permittee shall post signage at the site to inform constituents of the benefits of oyster restoration/enhancements, minimize the potential of vessel interactions and to indicate the site is closed to shellfish harvesting.
6. The permittee shall monitor the stability of oyster reefs at least every six months after the emplacement and after major storm events. Photographic documentation and a short description of the condition of the reefs after these observation periods must be provided to the Department within a month of the observation. This condition applies for the lifetime of the reef structure or until the structure is shown by the permittee to be stabilized and incapable of movement under normal conditions as determined or confirmed by staff to the Coastal Marshlands Protection Committee.
7. The Permittee must inform the Department prior to the removal of the oyster cultch materials if the project is deemed unsuccessful. Unsuccessful will be determined as: (a) material not exhibiting recruitment of oyster spat and/or barnacles within 24 months of deployment and/or (b) associated materials become unstable
And if the conditions aren’t met, then what? Nothing.
Republicans specialize in setting onerous restrictions because they’re not expected to be carried out, except against persons they don’t like.