Environmental Well Construction Notifications and Maintenance Permits
Well Management Program
As of July 1, 2017, new legislation combines monitoring wells, environmental bore holes, and remedial wells into a single category called an environmental well. Any boring or well 15 or more feet deep used for remediation, water sampling, water level monitoring, or testing or measuring water or earth properties, regardless of whether or not a confining layer or water is encountered, is an environmental well. This includes monitoring wells, remedial wells, geotechnical borings, test holes, piezometers, vapor recovery wells, and others. An environmental well must be constructed by either a licensed well contractor or a licensed environmental well contractor (formerly known as a monitoring well contractor).
The following documents will assist you when constructing an environmental well:
- Environmental Well Construction Notification Memo (PDF)
- Environmental Well Construction Notification Form (PDF)
- At-Grade Environmental Well Construction Requirements (PDF)
- Protective Manhole Covers For At-Grade Wells (PDF)
- Credit Card Payment Information Form (PDF)
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Temporary Environmental Wells
If an environmental well is sealed within 72 hours after beginning construction, it is considered to be a temporary environmental well. A sealing notification and fee ($75) are required to be submitted to the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) prior to beginning sealing of a temporary environmental well. A construction notification and construction record are not required for a temporary environmental well. For multiple temporary environmental wells constructed on a single property and with a difference in depth between the deepest and shallowest well of 25 feet or less, a single notification, fee, and sealing record can be submitted. For instance, four wells that have depths of 38, 48, 52 and 56 feet all have depths within 25 feet of each other and may all be included on a single notification and single record. Four wells with depths of 37, 49, 87, and 92 feet would require two sealing notifications, two fees, and two sealing records: one for the 37- and 49-foot deep wells; and another for the 87- and 92-foot deep wells. Sealing records need to be submitted within 30 days after sealing the last well and all work done under a single notification must be completed not later than 18 months after the sealing notification is submitted. If multiple temporary environmental wells are constructed under a single notification on a single property and have different location description or encounter substantially different geologic materials, additional pages with the additional location and geologic information may be attached to the sealing record. Submission of a scaled site map and/or GPS coordinates with the sealing record is encouraged.
Non-Temporary Environmental Wells
For those environmental wells that will remain longer than 72 hours after beginning construction, a construction notification and $275 fee will need to be submitted to MDH prior to beginning construction. For environmental wells that are listed on the same notification and constructed on a single property, only one construction notification and fee is required. Unlike the previously used monitoring well permit, the environmental well construction notification does not require review and approval by MDH prior to beginning well construction. The construction notification form is available in the upper right hand corner of this page. A sealing notification and $75 fee must be submitted to MDH prior to beginning sealing of each non-temporary environmental well.
Environmental wells that are in place longer than 14 months will require a maintenance permit and annual fee ($175) per site. A single maintenance permit and annual fee is required for each property, regardless of the number of environmental wells on that property. Federal, state, and local governmental units will now be exempt from maintenance permit fees, but will need to annually renew the permit until the well(s) are sealed. Minnesota Rules, chapter 4725 will be amended to adjust for these changes. In the meantime, the relevant rules that currently apply to monitoring wells and environmental bore holes will apply to environmental wells.
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Contact the MDH Well Management Section
651-201-4600 or 800-383-9808
Minnesota Department of Health