North America

Biodiversity offsets and compensation programs are well-developed in North America, particularly with the United States' wetland and species compensation programs and Canada's fish habitat compensation program. This region hosts the most mitigation banks of any region in the world. Programs are driven by national, state, and/or regional policy. Each of the three traditional compensation instruments are used in North America: compensation funds, one-off offsets, and mitigation banking. The US mitigation market (wetland, stream, and species) allows all three, although recent regulation favors credit banking. Canada prefers habitat compensation provided by the developer, perhaps because of lessons learned from the early challenges in the US system. And Mexico currently allows offsetting through compensation funds and developer responsible offsetting, but is beginning to explore mitigation banking.

Active Programs in North America

Number of Active Programs: 15
List of Active Programs: Fish Habitat Compensation (Canada), Wetlands Conservation Policy (New Brunswick), Wetland Conservation Policy (Nova Scotia), 2003 Wetland Conservation Policy for Prince Edward Island, US Bureau of Land Management Mitigation Policy, Aquatic Compensatory Mitigation (US), Recovery Credit System (US), Wetland Restoration/Compensation Guide (Alberta), WalMart's Acres for America, Habitat Credit Trading System (US), Conservation Banking (US), Program for Environmental Restoration and Compensation (Mexico), Forest Conservation Act (Maryland), Wetland compensation agreement between Manitobas Infrastructure and Transportation agency and Manitoba Habitat Heritage Corporation, Riparian Buffer Mitigation Program (North Carolina)
Number of Programs in Development: 3
List of Programs in Development: INE Biodiversity Banking Initiative for SEMARNAT (Mexico), Bay Bank Multi-Credit Watershed Market, Willamette Multi-Credit Watershed Market