WVWRAM

The Watershed Assessment Branch of DEP has developed a standardized method for rapidly assessing some of the important natural functions of all types of wetlands present in West Virginia. It is called the West Virginia Wetland Rapid Assessment Method (WVWRAM). WVWRAM uses on-site observations and off-site spatial data. This is a regulatory assessment tool for agency staff and environmental professionals. It requires a knowledge of Geographic Information Systems (GIS), wetland soils, plants, hydrology, and stressors.

WVWRAM has two components: (1) GIS tool for preliminary scoring and off-site metrics, and (2) rapid field method for final scoring. Both components are required for regulatory use, but the GIS tool can be used as a stand-alone for planning purposes.

A WV Rapid Assessment Methodology Public Meeting was held on February 12th, 2020 from 1pm to 3pm at the WV DEP Charleston Headquarters Office. The meeting focused on topics discussed in the public notice. Click on the link below to view the public notice.

Documents and Links

  • WVWRAM Introduction
    • Description: Powerpoint presentation on introduction to WV Wetland Rapid Assessment Method.
  • WVWRAM User Manual
    • Description: The West Virginia Wetland Rapid Assessment Method (WVWRAM) isa standardized protocol for rapidly assessing the functions, services, values, and condition of wetlands.
  • WVWRAM Reference Manual
    • Description: This technical document describes thedata analysisand formulas behind thetwo-part wetland assessment method, which consists of a rapid fieldassessmentand GIS assessment.
  • WVWRAM Access Database
    • Note: Please download this for the computer portion of our training. Please use Chrome, Firefox, or Edge as Internet Explorer might have issues downloading properly.
    • Login Instructions
      Add/Edit Data:
      Username: user Password: user1
      View Data:
      Username: viewer Password: viewer1

  • WVWRAM GIS Tool
    • Description: GIS tool for preliminary scoring and off-site metrics.
  • Statewide Map of Preliminary WVWRAM Scores
    • Description: View mapped wetlands in West Virginia, including wetland types and preliminary wetland function (WVWRAM) scores. Note that West Virginia's wetland maps are based on the National Wetland Inventory, which was mapped in the early 1980's in our area. Many wetlands are only approximately mapped. Smaller, drier, or forested wetlands are often missing from this map. WVDEP hopes to be able to update the wetland maps after LiDAR imagery becomes available for the state.