Begin Main Content Area

Stream and Wetland Regulatory Program

See the Program Updates page for any important program updates.

The Stream and Wetland Regulatory Program (a.k.a. Water Obstruction and Encroachment Program) handles and implements multiple regulatory duties and obligations. The programs listed below include requirements to obtain permits or authorizations under the listed program rules and regulations.

  • Chapter 105: Water Obstructions and Encroachments in Streams, Floodways, Wetlands, and Bodies of Water (for dams, see Dam Safety Program Page)
    • Submerged Lands License Agreements (SLLA) for regulated water obstructions and encroachment under Chapter 105
    • Sand and Gravel Royalty Agreements between commercial dredging operations and the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission

      The Chapter 105 regulatory program is comprised of regulations created under state law which regulate water obstructions and encroachments in streams, wetlands, the floodways of streams, and other bodies of water under Chapter 105. Water obstructions and encroachments include activities such as bridges, stream channel work, utilities, fills, etc. which are located within, along, or across stream, wetlands, floodways, or bodies of water. This program also includes issuance of Submerged Lands License Agreements for these activities.

  • Chapter 106: Obstructions in Floodplains for Commonwealth of PA or Political Subdivisions of the Commonwealth
  • Joint Permitting Process with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for Section 404 of Federal Clean Water Act and Section 10 Rivers and Harbors Act
  • 401 Water Quality Certification under Section 401 requirements of the Federal Clean Water Act.

Additional information on the regulations, permitting, forms, mitigation, and background can be found on the accompanying pages.

DEP has many trainings relating to the water obstruction and encroachment program on its Clean Water Academy and more continue to be added.

It is important to note that if a permit or approval is required under one of these regulatory programs, this does not mean that additional permits or approvals are not required. DEP has the Permit Application Consulting Tool (PACT) to assist applicants with determining which DEP permits and regulations may apply, and assist in setting up pre-application meetings with DEP.

Division of Wetlands, Encroachment and Training

The Division of Wetlands, Encroachments and Training develops and coordinates regulation, policy, program guidance and procedure for the implementation of the Chapter 105 and Chapter 106 regulations by DEP offices and Delegated County Conservation Districts, including coordination with Federal Clean Water Act, Section 404 requirements. This Division also administers the submerged lands licensing program as well as the commercial sand and gravel royalty agreements. This Division also coordinates policy, program guidance, and procedure for the issuance of 401 Water Quality Certification by DEP offices. The Division handles all mitigation banking permits, oversight, and management of an in-lieu fee program.

DEP Offices & Programs that Implement these Regulations

DEP has multiple office and program areas which perform regulatory duties under Chapter 105, 106, Section 401 of the Federal Clean Water Act, and Joint Permit Applications with the Federal Clean Water Act under section 404.

There are multiple DEP Offices which implement the program. See the stream and wetland program contact webpage for more information on each. DEP’s Oil and Gas program, Mining program, and Abandoned Mining program are all delegated to implement and review these regulations and permits. Further, DEP’s Regional Permit Coordination Office handles permitting involving the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) as well as projects which include multi-counties/multi-regions. Otherwise, the regulations are handled by the appropriate DEP Regional Office Waterways and Wetlands Program with one exception. General Permits 1 through 9 are managed by certain County Conservation Districts which have been delegated authority for review of these registrations for Chapter 105.