Chapter 91 Guides
Chapter 91 Permitting Guide
Description of Chapter 91 permitting, which activities require a permit, and which permits apply.
- Waterways Permitting Frequently Asked Questions
Q&A guide to Chapter 91 public-waterways permitting.
- Massachusetts Great Ponds List
Great ponds are under the jurisdiction of Chapter 91. A great pond is defined as any pond or lake that contained more than 10 acres in its natural state, whether now or in the past. This page lists all the known great ponds in Massachusetts.
Chapter 91 Forms
- BRP WW 04 - Request for Determination of Applicability
This determination is intended to answer with certainty whether a Waterways license or other authorization is required. For Wetlands Protection Act jurisdiction, use WPA Form 1. Revised September 2006.
- BRP WW 01, 03, 14, 15, 16, 17 - Chapter 91 Waterways License
Chapter 91 licenses are required for most water-dependent and non-water-dependent projects, including small residential docks, piers, municipal harbor plans, dredging, and more. Revised June 2006.
- BRP WW 06, 12 - Chapter 91 Simplified License & License Renewal
A project licensed under MGL Chapter 91, the Public Waterfront Act, using the simplified license option has a limited term of generally 10-15 years. For the authorization to continue, the Licensee, or his/her successor, must request the simplified license be renewed. Revised September 2006.
- BRP WW 05 - Certificate of Compliance
A Certificate of Compliance confirming that a project licensed under MGL Chapter 91, the Public Waterfront Act, has been completed according to the plans, specifications and conditions of that license. Revised July 2007.
Water Quality Certification Forms
- BRP WW 07, 08, 09: Water Quality Certifications, Dredging Projects
This permit is required for dredging projects which must obtain federal licenses and would result in a discharge to state waters. Revised September 2001.
- BRP WW 10, 11: Major/Minor Fill and Excavation Projects
This permit is required for projects that impact wetlands and submerged land, rare species, salt marshes, or other conditions as detailed in the instructions. Revised July 2001.
Wetlands Protection Act Permit Forms
- Notary Block No Longer Required for Wetlands Permits
Explains the removal of the notary block from certain Wetlands Permits.
- WPA Form 1: Request for Determination of Applicability
This process enables the applicant to seek a determination of whether the provisions of the Wetlands Protection Act apply to a particular land area, determine the boundaries of a wetland resource area, or other circumstances under which proposed work would be regulated by the Act.
WPA Form 2: Determination of Applicability
This form records which provisions of the Wetlands Protection Act and regulations apply to a proposed project.
- WPA Form 3: Notice of Intent
The Wetlands Protection Act prohibits the removal, dredging, filling, or altering of wetlands without a permit. A Notice of Intent is required to obtain such a permit. Revised January 2013 (updated address for Natural Heritage & Endangered Species Program).
- WPA Form 4: Abbreviated Notice of Intent
This form simplifies filing requirements for projects which are likely to result in limited impacts to wetland resource areas. Revised January 2013 (updated address for Natural Heritage & Endangered Species Program).
- WPA Form 4A: Abbreviated Notice of Resource Area Delineation
This form provides a procedure for an applicant to confirm the delineation of a bordering vegetated wetland.
- WPA Form 4B: Order of Resource Area Delineation
This form is for use by Conservation Commissions in response to a request for resource area delineation.
- WPA Form 5: Order of Conditions
This form is for use by Conservation Commissions when issuing an Order of Conditions to an applicant under the Wetlands Protection Act.
WPA Form 6: Notice of Non-Significance
This form is used to record a Conservation Commission's determination that a proposed project does not require an Order of Conditions because the project does not significantly impact an area identified in the Wetlands Protection Act.
WPA Form 7: Extension Permit for Order of Conditions
This form records the approved extension of an unexpired Order of Conditions.
WPA Form 8a: Request for Certificate of Compliance
Upon completion of the work authorized in an Order of Conditions, the property owner must request a Certificate of Compliance from the issuing authority stating that the work or portion of the work has been satisfactorily completed.
WPA Form 8b: Certificate of Compliance
A Certificate of Compliance is issued upon full or partial completion of work authorized in an Order of Conditions, or if the work never commenced and a new Notice of Intent and Order of Conditions are required.
WPA Form 9: Enforcement Order
Notice of activity in violation of the Wetlands Protection Act and required corrective action(s).
Wetlands Protection Act Emergency Certification Form
Certification for work in a resource area resulting from a natural disaster or other emergency.
Other Wetland Permits
- BRP WM 04: Herbicide Application
This license provides a review of chemical applications to lakes and ponds for maximum environmental health, and provides a means for keeping records of chemicals used. Revised January 2011.
- BRP WW 13: Renovation of Abandoned Cranberry Bogs
This permit is required when seeking to renovate an eligible abandoned cranberry bog for commercial cranberry cultivation. Revised February 2002.
Wetland Fee Transmittal Forms and Appendices
Request for Departmental Action Fee Transmittal Form
This fee transmittal form accompanies the Notice of Intent (WPA Form 3), Order of Resource Area Delineation (WPA Form 4B), or Request for Determination of Applicability (WPA Form 1). Revised December 2013.
ANRAD Wetland Fee Transmittal Form
This fee transmittal form accompanies the Abbreviated Notice of Resource Area Delineation (WPA Form 4A).
NOI Wetland Fee Transmittal Form
This fee transmittal form accompanies the Notice of Intent (WPA Form 3) or Abbreviated Notice of Intent (WPA Form 4).
- MassDEP Offices and Locations
MassDEP is headquartered in Boston, MA. Our regional & satellite offices are the hubs of MassDEP permitting, compliance, enforcement, and cleanup activity.
Areas of Critical Environmental Concern
Areas of Critical Environmental Concern (ACECs) are places in Massachusetts, so designated by the Secretary of Energy & Environmental Affairs, that receive special recognition because of the quality, uniqueness and significance of their natural and cultural resources. Projects within ACECs are subject to greater scrutiny to avoid or minimize their environmental impact.