Rivers may be designated as "Wild and Scenic" rivers. These rivers are considered protected much like a national wildlife refuge. Federal agencies may not assist by loan, grant, license, or otherwise any water resource project that would have a direct and adverse effect on the values for which a river was designated. If a project is near or adjacent to any designated Wild and Scenic rivers coordination is required prior to construction. Any potential for impact of these rivers must be coordinated, generally with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. There are currently five Federally-designated Wild and Scenic rivers in Region III: White Clay Creek (Delaware and Pennsylvania), the Allegheny River (Pennsylvania), Clarion River (Pennsylvania), Delaware River (Upper, Middle, and Lower) (Pennsylvania), and the Bluestone River (West Virginia).
Rivers may also be designated as "American Heritage" rivers. Federal agencies are required to consult with American River Heritage Communities to ensure that federal actions will have a positive effect on natural, historic, economic, and cultural resources of the river communities. If a project is near or adjacent to any designated American Heritage rivers, coordination is required prior to construction. There are three Federally-designated American Heritage rivers in Region III: the Potomac (District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia), the Upper Susquehanna-Lackawanna Watershed (Pennsylvania), and the New River (Virginia and West Virginia).