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Register
a water withdrawal or terminate a registration.
Report
annual water use data.
Pay
fees for registered water withdrawals.
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water use data and maps.
Learn
about water use in Wisconsin.
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Contact information
For information on this page, contact:
Water Use Program
608-266-2299
WI Department of Natural Resources
Water Use Section DG/5
PO Box 7921
Madison WI 53707-7921

Water use permitting

Apply for a Water Use Permit
water spray

Contact the Water Use Program at 608-266-2299 or by email.

If your withdrawal is located in the Great Lakes Basin (Lake Superior or Lake Michigan) and you plan to withdraw water at an average of 100,000 gallons per day or more in any 30-day period from the sources on your property, then you must apply and receive a water use permit prior to withdrawing water (required since December 8, 2011). There are no Water Use Permit application fees.

There are two types of Water Use permits.

  • Water Use General Permit - Required for withdrawals that average 100,000 gallons per day or more in any 30-day period but do not equal at least 1,000,000 gallons per day for 30 consecutive days.
  • Water Use Individual Permit - Required for withdrawals that equal at least 1,000,000 gallons per day for 30 consecutive days.

General permits for new and increased withdrawals

Properties in the Great Lakes basin that average 100,000 gallons per day or more in any 30-day period but are less than 1,000,000 gallons per day for 30 consecutive days are required to apply for a Water Use General Permit. Water Use General Permit applications are automatically mailed to high capacity well applicants or Chapter 30.18 applicants in the Great Lakes basin that have registered their withdrawal. Coverage under a General Permit is required prior to withdrawing at the level requiring a permit.

Individual permits for new and increased withdrawals

Withdrawals that equal at least 1,000,000 gallons per day for 30 consecutive days require an Individual Water Use Permit. A permit must be required prior to withdrawing water. Contact the Water Use Program at 608-266-2299 if you plan to withdraw this volume of water.

Last revised: Thursday June 14 2018