The current annual edition of Boy Scout Requirements lists the official merit badge requirements.

Once new or revised merit badge requirements appear in this publication, which is released each January, any Scout just beginning work on a merit badge must use the requirements as stated there.

These changes were not noted in the listing on the inside front cover of the 2018 was added to requirements 5b and 5c.

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s book for rank advancement, Eagle Palms, and merit badges are the official requirements of the Boy Scouts of America and are effective Jan. The most current and any updated merit badge requirements can be found at

When new or revised merit badge requirements appear in this book, any Scout beginning work on a merit badge must use the requirements as stated therein.

A new edition of the was issued in February, 2016, containing the final, approved, requirements.

During 2016, which served as a transition period, Scouts could advance to the next rank using the previous requirements, Since January 1, 2017, however, all Scouts must use the current requirements for advancement.

However, although the Kindle versions are still available, the digital interactive versions are currently (as of January 2018) not available, while they are undergoing some production platform changes.

We have also included in this report a list of 8 merit badges where the wording of the requirements in the book differs from the wording in the current merit badge pamphlets.

The National Council may establish a new date for when use of the existing requirements must cease.

There is no time limit between starting and completing a badge, although a counselor may determine so much time has passed since any effort took place that the new requirements must be used.

The note regarding Varsity Scouts was deleted, the note regarding Alternative requirements was revised, and footnote Under certain exceptional conditions, where the climate keeps the outdoor water temperature below safe levels the year-round, or where there are no suitably safe and accessible places (outdoors or indoors) within a reasonable traveling distance to swim at any time during the year, the council Scout executive and advancement committee may, on an individual Scout basis, authorize an alternative .

The local council may establish appropriate procedures for submitting and processing these types of requests.

Although it was not announced at that time, Requirement 5 was changed in 2017 by splitting and revising the list of Venturing and Sea Scouting positions.