Protecting Streams and Wetlands


Streams and wetlands are essential elements of California’s natural heritage. In addition to their aesthetic qualities, they protect and enhance water quality throughout our state.

You should apply for Clean Water Act §401 Water Quality Certification and/or file a Report of Waste Discharge if you are planning a project that involves any activity that will, or may, physically alter any Waters of the State—including wetlands, vernal pools, streams, rivers, beaches, lakes, bays and the ocean—due to excavation, filling or other any other physical alteration.  All such alterations fall under the legal terms “dredging” and “filling,” and so these are routinely referred to as “dredge and fill” activities.  This Certification and/or report is needed even if a Stream and Lakebed
 Alteration Agreement has been obtained from the Department of Fish and Game.

To begin an application, create an account (coming soon) or log in.

Read more about California’s Dredge/Fill (401) and Wetlands Program.