Pre-Application Introduction


Pre-​​Application Meetings

The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) believes that a PreApplication meeting is an excellent opportunity to find out what information is necessary to submit a complete application. Experience shows that the submission of a complete application results in an expeditious review of a project, while an incomplete application often results in processing delays.

Meeting with a project manager, who is familiar with your area and knowledgeable about the regulatory process, prior to submitting an application helps identify informational requirements and potential pitfalls in the application review process. A PreApplication meeting highlights review procedures and provides guidance on the information necessary to advance the project, including the need for detailed engineering studies, natural resource assessments, and mitigation requirements.

In addition, submitting the information requested in the PreApplication Form will help determine if your proposal is a major or minor project.  MDE will also be able to provide you with an estimate of the processing time and costs, including application, processing, and impact fees, if required.

With climate change increasing precipitation, sea level rise and flooding in Maryland, the hydrology of wetland and waterway systems are also expected to change, possibly increasing flood risks to projects in or near wetlands, their regulated buffers, and waterways, including the 100-year nontidal floodplain. The Wetlands and Waterways Protection Program is incorporating the best available flooding information and science into wetlands and waterways application decisions. For additional information on climate change priorities within our water programs, please click on the WSA Climate Change​ web page:

To schedule a PreApplication meeting for proposed activities in tidal wetlands, nontidal wetlands, or a nontidal waterway, including the 100-year nontidal floodplain, please go to the link below and complete and submit the PreApplication form.  You will be contacted to set-up an appointment.


The climate change risk drivers include changes in average annual, seasonal and extreme precipitation events; increased wind-driven storm surges and wave energy; relative sea level rise; water table changes; changes in currents; and increased air and water temperature. The previous climate change drivers could have the following impacts:

  • Flooding

  • Salinity Regime Changes

  • Natural or hardened shoreline stability impacts

  • Structural and physical integrity and function

  • Life-cycle and adaptive design Considerations

  • Site access for monitoring or maintenance

As applicable, all project proponents are encouraged to consider potential future climate change risks and vulnerabilities during your project planning and are encouraged to submit this information with a project permit application.
Suggested resource tools for evaluation of climate change risks can be found here:

​​​​ Coldwater Resources Mapping Tool, a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) based interactive map

The Maryland Department of the Environment is providing applicants with access to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Coldwater Resources Mapping Tool* as well as a link to access MDE's Coldwater Resources page which serves as an information hub for all current MDE guidance, policies, ongoing work, and resources for cold water protection so that applicants can determine if their project may be proposed in an area that may have trout and/or other coldwater species and to advise your planning process.

MDE's Coldwater Resources Page:

DNR's Coldwater Resources Mapping Tool*

This mapping tool has several layers which users can turn on or off. By clicking on a watershed within the map, an applicant will be able to determine if their project is in a location with potential coldwater resources and will be provided contact information for local DNR biologists.

Permit applicants are encouraged to consult the local DNR fisheries biologist for site specific information on coldwater fish and benthic macroinvertebrate species. To access the DNR’s Coldwater Resources Mapping Tool please visit the following link:​

*Maryland Department of Natural Resources has made every attempt to provide accurate and up to date information on this mapping tool. DNR cannot be held responsible for the misuse or misinterpretation of any information and offers no warranty guarantees or representations of any kind in connection to its accuracy or completeness. DNR accepts no liability for any loss, damage or inconvenience caused as a result of reliance on the GIS application. The use of this GIS application during the pre-screening process does not forego additional resource screening that will occur at later stages. Maryland Department of the Environment and Maryland Department of Natural Resources' Environmental Review Program will further review the project if a species of concern is encountered in the associated watershed.

Pre-Application Meeting and Pre-Filing Meeting forms​

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