Wetlands State Resource Locator

State Wetlands Information Tool (SWIFT)


New Jersey

Note: Most states have enacted laws and regulations to protect wetlands. In many cases, these rules are established to define the state's role in the "§404 permit/§401 certification process." This process involves the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and your state environmental agency. To learn more about the wetlands permitting process go to the CICA Wetlands Regulations/Permit page.

Primary State Wetlands Web Page. This web page should explain the state wetlands program and provide links to various wetlands resources.

Construction Permit Process - State Rules

    How Are Wetlands Activities Regulated by New Jersey? New Jersey is one of two states that has assumed the §404 regulatory program from the Army Corps of Engineers. The Fresh Water Wetlands Act requires all persons wishing to perform a regulated activity to obtain a permit from the Department of Environmental Protection and Energy (DEPE).

    Mitigation Measures. Permit applicants must create mitigation measures to decrease the adverse impact of their projects. DEPE may require that a freshwater wetland of equal value be created to replace the land lost, to mitigate the adverse impact on the environment. See: http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/legislativepub/auditor/42542.pdf.

Regulatory Definitions
    Wetlands. Freshwater wetlands are areas "inundated or saturated by surface water or groundwater at a frequency and duration sufficient to support, and that under normal circumstances do support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soil conditions, commonly known as hydrophytic vegetation."

    Wetland Categories. Wetlands are divided into classes, according to wetlands of exceptional resource value, ordinary resource value, and intermediate resource value.

    Regulated Wetland Activities. The Act regulates the removal, disturbance, or dredging of soil, sand, gravel, or aggregate material of any kind; the drainage or disturbance of the water level or water table; the dumping, discharging, or filling of wetlands with any material; the driving of pilings; the placing of obstructions; and the destruction of plant life that would alter the condition of freshwater wetland.

    Exempt Wetland Activities. No freshwater wetlands permit is required for normal agricultural activities, normal harvesting of forest products, areas regulated as coastal wetlands, projects which have received initial approval under the Municipal Land Use Law, and certain restoration work on manmade drainage ditches.

Wetland Regulatory Background Information Organizations/Non-Government Programs
  • Water Environment Federation. The WEF Web site provides access to a wetlands related technical discussion area, as well as publications and other information on wetlands.

  • Wetlands Regulation Center. The Wetlands Regulation Center Web site contains information on laws, policies and regulations concerning activities regulated under Sections 401 and 404 of the Clean Water Act.

  • Association of State Wetland Managers. The Association of State Wetland Managers Web site provides information on wetlands news and events, including new regulations/legislation, upcoming conferences and events, publications, and more.

  • Society of Wetland Scientists. The Society of Wetland Scientists Web site provides access to on-line scientific wetlands journals and a wetlands discussion forum, as well as information on upcoming wetlands conferences and events.

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