Political references aside, the unequivocal answer is 'no'.
Inland and coastal swamps - wetlands - are ecosystems that support all life, including us. If rainforests are the lungs of the planet, wetlands are the kidneys. Trapping nutrients from runoff, they are immensely important filters of fresh and saltwater.
This makes them extremely rich habitats, supporting fish, birds and other wildlife, which are integral to the food web. They are breeding grounds for fish and molluscs that are in turn, food for us. As human population climbs relentlessly towards 8 billion people and beyond, we cannot afford to undermine food production systems.
Wetlands are also supremely good at capturing carbon dioxide. The remaining mangroves that currently cover 14-15 million hectares around the world, trap an estimated 31 to 34 billion kilograms of carbon every year.
Researchers at Deakin University believe that this biosequestration is one of the single largest opportunities for reducing CO2 emissions in Australia.
While wetlands cover only about 4 per cent of the earth's land surface, they are sequestering up to 33 per cent of the carbon in soils.
In mangrove forests, tidal marshes and seagrass ecosystems, carbon is stored in the soil down to 3 metres. By clearing them, we remove the carbon sinks and also make coastlines vulnerable to storm damage.
In inland waters, wetlands and healthy riparian zones also trap nutrients and preserve soil. Healthy rivers also store considerably more carbon than unhealthy ones. Concrete drains accelerate runoff, and the increased flow of nutrients exacerbates outbreaks of blue-green algae.
These are examples of ecosystem services - work that nature does for us for free.
Unfortunately, wetlands also occupy prime waterfront real estate where we like to build houses, hotels, marinas and dockyards.
Humanity has an abysmal record of removing wetlands that once covered around 10 per cent of the earth's land surface. In only 50 years, half the world's mangrove forests have vanished.
Our attitude to wetlands and other parts of the environment would be different if they were explicitly acknowledged as part of the economy, however, ecosystem services are completely ignored by GDP. In fact, their destruction ostensibly boosts GDP because of the economic activity involved in 'developing' them.
Fortunately, many cities have programs to restore urban waterways, making them attractive places while improving the environment. They replace the hard, ugly concrete surfaces with places that are nice to visit.
By replacing these, we create natural rainwater buffers, promoting places where amphibians, dragonflies and birds can thrive.
The Fuzzy Logic Science Show is 11am Sundays on 2xx 98.3FM.
Send your questions to AskFuzzy@Zoho.com Twitter @FuzzyLogicSci Podcast FuzzyLogicOn2xx.Podbean.com