The inland wetlands and watercourses of the City of Norwich are an indispensable and irreplaceable but fragile natural resource. The wetlands and watercourses are an interrelated web of nature essential to an adequate supply of surface and subsurface water; to hydrological stability and control of flooding and erosion; to the recharging and purification of groundwater; and to the existence of many forms of animal, aquatic and plant life. Many inland wetlands and watercourses have been destroyed or are in danger of destruction because of the deposition, filling or removal of material, the diversion or obstruction of water flow, the erection of structures and other uses. Such activities have had, and will continue to have, significant impact on the environment and ecology of the City of Norwich. The conservation and protection of the wetlands and watercourses are in the public interest and are essential to the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of the City of Norwich. It is, therefore, the purpose of these regulations to make provisions for the protection, conservation, maintenance and use of inland wetlands and watercourses by minimizing their disturbance and pollution; preventing damage from erosion, turbidity or sedimentation; and vegetation and the destruction of the natural habitats thereof; deterring and inhibiting the danger of floods; protecting the quality of wetlands and watercourses for their natural resource, economic, aesthetic, recreational and other public and private uses and values; and protecting the City’s potable water supplies from the dangers of drought, overdraft, pollution, misuse and mismanagement by providing an orderly process to balance the need to protect the environment with economic, safety and other concerns and thus guarantee to citizens of the City of Norwich and to future generations the safety of such natural resources for their benefit and enjoyment.