The report summarizes current scientific understanding about the connectivity of streams and wetlands to
downstream waters. The U.S. EPA has conducted a thorough review of the literature - more than 1,200
peer-reviewed and published documents - on the scientific evidence regarding the effects that streams,
wetlands, and open waters have on larger downstream waters such as rivers, lakes, estuaries and oceans.
The focus of the report is on surface and shallow subsurface connections by which small or temporary streams,
nontidal wetlands and open waters affect larger waters such as rivers, lakes, reservoirs and estuaries. The
EPA, along with other federal agencies and states, can use this scientific report to inform policy and
regulatory decisions, including the Clean Water Rule being developed by the EPA and the U.S. Army Corp of
Please click on the image to download the report.