For more information on the Hydraulic Permit Application (HPA) Program, please contact:
WDFW Habitat Program
(360) 902-2534

Hydraulic Project Approval (HPA)

Online HPA Application

Emergency HPA Information

Contact a WDFW biologist

Update on suction dredging, other activities affected by drought

WDFW has begun to rescind emergency restrictions on suction dredging, mechanical removal of aquatic plants, and fishing in rivers and streams affected by the summer drought. The department expects to repeal restrictions on additional waters as stream conditions improve. Rivers and streams where restrictions are still in effect are listed below.

A news release issued Sept. 2 describes the department’s recent action to rescind drought-related restrictions on certain rivers and streams.

Hydraulic Project Approval (HPA)

Welcome to the Hydraulic Project Approval (HPA) website for Washington State.

Since 1943, anyone planning certain construction projects or activities in or near state waters has been required to obtain an environmental permit commonly known as an HPA. Thousands of HPAs are issued each year for activities ranging from work on bulkheads, piers, and docks to culvert replacement and mineral prospecting.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) administers the HPA program under the state Hydraulic Code, which was specifically designed to protect fish life. WDFW Habitat Biologists are available to help people and groups apply for an HPA and ensure their projects meet state conservation standards for finfish, shellfish and their aquatic environment.

To simplify the application process, the department recently added a new online Aquatic Protection Permitting System (APPS) – available on this website – which allows applicants to:

  • Submit an application and any necessary supporting documents.
  • Convert the APPS application into a JARPA with one click
  • Pay their application fee, using a credit card or bank transfer.
  • Check the status of their application and correspond with WDFW staff.

The new online tool also allows the public to search for, receive updates about, and comment on HPA applications.

Before applying for an HPA, people are encouraged to use the tabs above to learn more about the application process and WDFW’s new APPS online application system.