Regulatory Sourcebook

Official source for permitting policies, guidelines, regulations and procedures of the Baltimore District Regulatory Branch.  

Wetlands are areas that are periodically or permanently inundated by surface or ground water and support vegetation adapted for life in saturated oil. Wetlands include swamps, marshes, bogs and similar areas. As a significant natural resource, wetlands serve important functions relating to fish and wildlife. Such functions include food chain production, habitat, nesting spawning, rearing and resting sites for aquatic and land species. They also provide protection of other areas from wave action and erosion; storage areas for storm and flood waters; natural recharge areas where ground and surface water are interconnected; and natural water filtration and purification functions. These are the waters where permits are required for the discharge of dredged or fill material pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act.

Navigable Waters of the United States are those waters of the United States that are subject to the ebb and flow of the tide shoreward to the mean high water mark. They are also presently used and have been used in the past or may be susceptible to use to transport interstate or foreign commerce. These are waters that are navigable in the traditional sense where permits are required for certain activities pursuant to Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act.

Regulatory Authorities

The regulatory authorities and responsibilities of the Corps of Engineers are based on the following laws:

Other laws may also affect the processing of applications for Corps of Engineers permits. Some of these laws are the National Environmental Policy Act, the Coastal Zone Management Act, the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act, and the Endangered Species Act.