New Nationwide Permits Replace NWP 26
On March 9, 2000, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers published a final rule issuing five new nationwide permits (NWPs) and modifying six existing NWPs to replace NWP 26 (65 Fed. Reg. 12817). The final rule also added two new NWP general conditions and modified nine existing NWP general conditions. The final rule will become effective on June 5, 2000, the date when NWP 26 is due to expire. Any affected activities that begin after March 9 should plan to follow the new rule.
The new NWPs are activity-based. They will generally require pre-construction notification to the district engineer for any activity that will disturb more than 1/10 of an acre of land. The maximum amount of acreage that can be disturbed using a NWP is ½ acre. Local district offices are allowed to apply more stringent conditions and limitations. The Corps contends that the new NWPs will increase the protection of critical resource waters and waters of the United States within 100-year floodplains.