Georgia's Underground Injection Control Program Protects Ground Water from Improper Waste Disposal
To maintain ground water quality, the Georgia Geologic Survey Branch of the Environmental Protection Division (EPD), Georgia Department of Natural Resources, implements the Georgia Rules for Underground Injection Control. Underground injection of waste fluids is not a viable disposal practice in Georgia. No Underground Injection Control (UIC) Class I (industrial waste disposal wells), Class II (wells for enhanced oil and gas recovery), Class III (subsurface fluid mining), or Class IV (hazardous waste disposal wells) have been issued operating permits in the State. Several UIC Class V Injection Wells exist in Georgia. Class V Injection wells are injection wells not classified as Class I - Class IV. Two Class V wells that return non-contact cooling water to the aquifer from which it is withdrawn have received operating permits in order to maintain aquifer pressure. Another Class V injection system was permitted in the past to return non-contact ground water to an aquifer to prevent sinkholes from developing. Permitting some Class V injection wells and plugging others contributes to maintaining the overall quality of Georgia's ground water.