U.S. Code of Federal Regulations

Regulations most recently checked for updates: Jun 19, 2024

§ 144.51 - Conditions applicable to all permits.

The following conditions apply to all UIC permits. All conditions applicable to all permits shall be incorporated into the permits either expressly or by reference. If incorporated by reference, a specific citation to these regulations (or the corresponding approved State regulations) must be given in the permit.

(a) Duty to comply. The permittee must comply with all conditions of this permit. Any permit noncompliance constitutes a violation of the Safe Drinking Water Act and is grounds for enforcement action; for permit termination, revocation and reissuance, or modification; or for denial of a permit renewal application; except that the permittee need not comply with the provisions of this permit to the extent and for the duration such noncompliance is authorized in an emergency permit under § 144.34.

(b) Duty to reapply. If the permittee wishes to continue an activity regulated by this permit after the expiration date of this permit, the permittee must apply for and obtain a new permit.

(c) Need to halt or reduce activity not a defense. It shall not be a defense for a permittee in an enforcement action that it would have been necessary to halt or reduce the permitted activity in order to maintain compliance with the conditions of this permit.

(d) Duty to mitigate. The permittee shall take all reasonable steps to minimize or correct any adverse impact on the environment resulting from noncompliance with this permit.

(e) Proper operation and maintenance. The permittee shall at all times properly operate and maintain all facilities and systems of treatment and control (and related appurtenances) which are installed or used by the permittee to achieve compliance with the conditions of this permit. Proper operation and maintenance includes effective performance, adequate funding, adequate operator staffing and training, and adequate laboratory and process controls, including appropriate quality assurance procedures. This provision requires the operation of back-up or auxiliary facilities or similar systems only when necessary to achieve compliance with the conditions of the permit.

(f) Permit actions. This permit may be modified, revoked and reissued, or terminated for cause. The filing of a request by the permittee for a permit modification, revocation and reissuance, or termination, or a notification of planned changes or anticipated noncompliance, does not stay any permit condition.

(g) Property rights. This permit does not convey any property rights of any sort, or any exclusive privilege.

(h) Duty to provide information. The permittee shall furnish to the Director, within a time specified, any information which the Director may request to determine whether cause exists for modifying, revoking and reissuing, or terminating this permit, or to determine compliance with this permit. The permittee shall also furnish to the Director, upon request, copies of records required to be kept by this permit.

(i) Inspection and entry. The permittee shall allow the Director, or an authorized representative, upon the presentation of credentials and other documents as may be required by law, to:

(1) Enter upon the permittee's premises where a regulated facility or activity is located or conducted, or where records must be kept under the conditions of this permit;

(2) Have access to and copy, at reasonable times, any records that must be kept under the conditions of this permit;

(3) Inspect at reasonable times any facilities, equipment (including monitoring and control equipment), practices, or operations regulated or required under this permit; and

(4) Sample or monitor at reasonable times, for the purposes of assuring permit compliance or as otherwise authorized by the SDWA, any substances or parameters at any location.

(j) Monitoring and records. (1) Samples and measurements taken for the purpose of monitoring shall be representative of the monitored activity.

(2) The permittee shall retain records of all monitoring information, including the following:

(i) Calibration and maintenance records and all original strip chart recordings for continuous monitoring instrumentation, copies of all reports required by this permit, and records of all data used to complete the application for this permit, for a period of at least 3 years from the date of the sample, measurement, report, or application. This period may be extended by request of the Director at any time; and

(ii) The nature and composition of all injected fluids until three years after the completion of any plugging and abandonment procedures specified under § 144.52(a)(6), or under part 146 subpart G as appropriate. The Director may require the owner or operator to deliver the records to the Director at the conclusion of the retention period. For EPA administered programs, the owner or operator shall continue to retain the records after the three year retention period unless he delivers the records to the Regional Administrator or obtains written approval from the Regional Administrator to discard the records.

(3) Records of monitoring information shall include:

(i) The date, exact place, and time of sampling or measurements;

(ii) The individual(s) who performed the sampling or measurements;

(iii) The date(s) analyses were performed;

(iv) The individual(s) who performed the analyses;

(v) The analytical techniques or methods used; and

(vi) The results of such analyses.

(4) Owners or operators of Class VI wells shall retain records as specified in subpart H of part 146, including §§ 146.84(g), 146.91(f), 146.92(d), 146.93(f), and 146.93(h) of this chapter.

(k) Signatory requirement. All applications, reports, or information submitted to the Administrator shall be signed and certified. (See § 144.32.)

(l) Reporting requirements—(1) Planned changes. The permittee shall give notice to the Director as soon as possible of any planned physical alterations or additions to the permitted facility.

(2) Anticipated noncompliance. The permittee shall give advance notice to the Director of any planned changes in the permitted facility or activity which may result in noncompliance with permit requirements.

(3) Transfers. This permit is not transferable to any person except after notice to the Director. The Director may require modification or revocation and reissuance of the permit to change the name of the permittee and incorporate such other requirements as may be necessary under the Safe Drinking Water Act. (See § 144.38; in some cases, modification or revocation and reissuance is mandatory.)

(4) Monitoring reports. Monitoring results shall be reported at the intervals specified elsewhere in this permit.

(5) Compliance schedules. Reports of compliance or noncompliance with, or any progress reports on, interim and final requirements contained in any compliance schedule of this permit shall be submitted no later than 30 days following each schedule date.

(6) Twenty-four hour reporting. The permittee shall report any noncompliance which may endanger health or the environment, including:

(i) Any monitoring or other information which indicates that any contaminant may cause an endangerment to a USDW; or

(ii) Any noncompliance with a permit condition or malfunction of the injection system which may cause fluid migration into or between USDWs.

Any information shall be provided orally within 24 hours from the time the permittee becomes aware of the circumstances. A written submission shall also be provided within 5 days of the time the permittee becomes aware of the circumstances. The written submission shall contain a description of the noncompliance and its cause, the period of noncompliance, including exact dates and times, and if the noncompliance has not been corrected, the anticipated time it is expected to continue; and steps taken or planned to reduce, eliminate, and prevent reoccurrence of the noncompliance.

(7) Other noncompliance. The permittee shall report all instances of noncompliance not reported under paragraphs (l) (4), (5), and (6) of this section, at the time monitoring reports are submitted. The reports shall contain the information listed in paragraph (l)(6) of this section.

(8) Other information. Where the permittee becomes aware that it failed to submit any relevant facts in a permit application, or submitted incorrect information in a permit application or in any report to the Director, it shall promptly submit such facts or information.

(m) Requirements prior to commencing injection. Except for all new wells authorized by an area permit under § 144.33(c), a new injection well may not commence injection until construction is complete, and

(1) The permittee has submitted notice of completion of construction to the Director; and

(2)(i) The Director has inspected or otherwise reviewed the new injection well and finds it is in compliance with the conditions of the permit; or

(ii) The permittee has not received notice form the Director of his or her intent to inspect or otherwise review the new injection well within 13 days of the date of the notice in paragraph (m)(1) of this section, in which case prior inspection or review is waived and the permittee may commence injection. The Director shall include in his notice a reasonable time period in which he shall inspect the well.

(n) The permittee shall notify the Director at such times as the permit requires before conversion or abandonment of the well or in the case of area permits before closure of the project.

(o) A Class I, II or III permit shall include and a Class V permit may include conditions which meet the applicable requirements of § 146.10 of this chapter to ensure that plugging and abandonment of the well will not allow the movement of fluids into or between USDWs. Where the plan meets the requirements of § 146.10 of this chapter, the Director shall incorporate the plan into the permit as a permit condition. Where the Director's review of an application indicates that the permittee's plan is inadequate, the Director may require the applicant to revise the plan, prescribe conditions meeting the requirements of this paragraph, or deny the permit. A Class VI permit shall include conditions which meet the requirements set forth in § 146.92 of this chapter. Where the plan meets the requirements of § 146.92 of this chapter, the Director shall incorporate it into the permit as a permit condition. For purposes of this paragraph, temporary or intermittent cessation of injection operations is not abandonment.

(p) Plugging and abandonment report. For EPA-administered programs, within 60 days after plugging a well or at the time of the next quarterly report (whichever is less) the owner or operator shall submit a report to the Regional Administrator. If the quarterly report is due less than 15 days before completion of plugging, then the report shall be submitted within 60 days. The report shall be certified as accurate by the person who performed the plugging operation. Such report shall consist of either:

(1) A statement that the well was plugged in accordance with the plan previously submitted to the Regional Administrator; or

(2) Where actual plugging differed from the plan previously submitted, and updated version of the plan on the form supplied by the regional administrator, specifying the differences.

(q) Duty to establish and maintain mechanical integrity. (1) The owner or operator of a Class I, II, III or VI well permitted under this part shall establish mechanical integrity prior to commencing injection or on a schedule determined by the Director. Thereafter the owner or operator of Class I, II, and III wells must maintain mechanical integrity as defined in § 146.8 of this chapter and the owner or operator of Class VI wells must maintain mechanical integrity as defined in § 146.89 of this chapter. For EPA-administered programs, the Regional Administrator may require by written notice that the owner or operator comply with a schedule describing when mechanical integrity demonstrations shall be made.

(2) When the Director determines that a Class I, II, III or VI well lacks mechanical integrity pursuant to § 146.8 or § 146.89 of this chapter for Class VI of this chapter, he/she shall give written notice of his/her determination to the owner or operator. Unless the Director requires immediate cessation, the owner or operator shall cease injection into the well within 48 hours of receipt of the Director's determination. The Director may allow plugging of the well pursuant to the requirements of § 146.10 of this chapter or require the permittee to perform such additional construction, operation, monitoring, reporting and corrective action as is necessary to prevent the movement of fluid into or between USDWs caused by the lack of mechanical integrity. The owner or operator may resume injection upon written notification from the Director that the owner or operator has demonstrated mechanical integrity pursuant to § 146.8 of this chapter.

(3) The Director may allow the owner or operator of a well which lacks mechanical integrity pursuant to § 146.8(a)(1) of this chapter to continue or resume injection, if the owner or operator has made a satisfactory demonstration that there is no movement of fluid into or between USDWs.

[48 FR 14189, Apr. 1, 1983, as amended at 49 FR 20185, May 11, 1984; 53 FR 28147, July 26, 1988; 58 FR 63898, Dec. 3, 1993; 75 FR 77289, Dec. 10, 2010]