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Protecting the health and safety of Delaware residents and visitors is a primary goal of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC).
Water runs through our lives and sustains us in many ways, from the most basic physical functions of our bodies to our mental and psychological well-being. We depend on water. We need it to be clean and plentiful.
The management of solid and hazardous wastes, and hazardous materials, has long been a core function of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC).
Nearly 40% of of the US population lives in a coastal county. In Delaware, everyone lives in a coastal county and many of us find ourselves on or near the shore on a daily basis.
Delaware is a coastal state. Most of the land in Delaware is flat and close to sea-level. Our underlying water table is generally high. As a result, drainage and the management of stormwater are important considerations in land use planning, construction, and agriculture.
Part of the mission of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control is protection of public health and the environment. One set of tools the Department uses to meet those goals is a collection of regulations and permits focused on the wise management, conservation, and enhancement of the State’s natural resources. Regulatory and permitting programs are meant to guide the use and management of natural resources and to balance environmental protection with economic growth and activity.
Climate change is happening now and it affects our everyday lives. We are seeing increased frequency and strength of coastal storms. Rainfall events are becoming more severe. Heat waves are affecting human health and our valuable agricultural sector. And, as a coastal state, we must pay attention to changes in sea levels.
A wetland is simply an area of land that is wet during the growing season. All true wetlands have three characteristics: typical wetland plants, wetland soils, and evidence that water is or can be at or near the surface. Our wetlands provide valuable service to Delaware. Wetlands purify our water. They provide habitat for rare and commercially important plants, fish and animals. And they protect us from flooding.
DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife manages nearly 50,000 acres of land that provides habitat for a multitude of wild plants, animals, fish, insects and rare species of all kinds. And it spearheads several important wildlife and habitat conservation and education initiatives, including the Wildlife Species Conservation and Research Program and the Delaware Shorebird Project.
Delaware is rich in natural beauty. Its landscape ranges from the rolling hills of New Castle County, through the coastal marshes and river systems of Kent County, to the woodlands and beaches of Sussex County.
The new DNREC website organizes information both by both the organizational structure of the agency (who in DNREC does what) and by topics of interest to users (what does the person visiting the website need to know about?). Find information on some of the most popular topics.
Recycling is more than just a feel-good activity or a way to teach environmental stewardship in school. Recycling is an economic engine that has created job opportunities in Delaware and has significantly reduced Delaware’s rate of trash disposal while extending the life of our landfills.
Humans, plants, and animals all need clean air to survive. A variety of human activities can add pollutants to the air and harm our health. DNREC has several programs to help ensure Delaware’s air meets State and Federal Air Quality Standards. These standards protect public health and the environment. DNREC staff track