Maryland's Critical Area Commission for the Chesapeake and Atlantic Coastal Bays

Shore Erosion Control

Photograph of Living Shoreline

Shore erosion control is an integrated process that impacts both aquatic and upland resources. An authorization from the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) and a permit from a local government are required prior to starting a project.

The information required for submission to MDE can be found on MDE’s website by clicking here.

Since February 4, 2013, MDE’s regulations require that a proposed Buffer Management Plan (BMP) be submitted as part of the shore erosion control application. By requiring the BMP at the beginning of the review process, MDE, the Critical Area Commission, and local governments can work together to ensure that any impacts to the Buffer resulting from a shore erosion control project are minimized and, where appropriate, mitigated or restored.

In addition to the Buffer Management Plan, MDE’s regulations require the submission of a Buffer Notification Form. This form notifies the property owner and any representative of the property owner of the Buffer requirements and the need to have all State and local permits prior to proceeding to construction.

As part of this review process, and as required under COMAR 26.24.04.01-3, in order for MDE to consider an application complete, a proposed Buffer Management Plan and a Buffer Notification Form, along with all other information required by MDE under this regulation must be submitted. Failure to submit these documents may result in the delay or denial of a tidal wetlands application by MDE.

The proposed Buffer Management Plan must address disturbance of the Buffer, including grading, clearing, access, and the location of stock piles.

Below is the Buffer Notification Form and a link for information on Buffer Management Plans. There are also specific Buffer Management Plans provided below for offshore and bulkhead replacements.

Many local governments utilize their own customized forms for submission to them of a Buffer Management Plan. Please contact your local permit office for any additional forms. Local contact information can be found by clicking here.