40 CFR § 144.21 - Existing Class I, II (except enhanced recovery and hydrocarbon storage) and III wells.

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§ 144.21 Existing Class I, II (except enhanced recovery and hydrocarbon storage) and III wells.

(a) An existing Class I, II (except enhanced recovery and hydrocarbon storage) and III injection well is authorized by rule if the owner or operator injects into the existing well within one year after the date at which a UIC program authorized under the SDWA becomes effective for the first time or inventories the well pursuant to the requirements of § 144.26. An owner or operator of a well which is authorized by rule pursuant to this section shall rework, operate, maintain, convert, plug, abandon or inject into the well in compliance with applicable regulations.

(b)Duration of well authorization by rule.Well authorization under this section expires upon the effective date of a permit issued pursuant to §§ 144.25, 144.31, 144.33 or 144.34; after plugging and abandonment in accordance with an approved plugging and abandonment plan pursuant to §§ 144.28(c) and 146.10, and upon submission of a plugging and abandonment report pursuant to § 144.28(k); or upon conversion in compliance with § 144.28(j).

(c)Prohibitions on injection. An owner or operator of a well authorized by rule pursuant to this section is prohibited from injecting into the well:

(1) Upon the effective date of an applicable permit denial;

(2) Upon failure to submit a permit application in a timely manner pursuant to §§ 144.25 or 144.31;

(3) Upon failure to submit inventory information in a timely manner pursuant to § 144.26;

(4) Upon failure to comply with a request for information in a timely manner pursuant to § 144.27;

(5) Upon failure to provide alternative financial assurance pursuant to § 144.28(d)(7);

(6) Forty-eight hours after receipt of a determination by the Director pursuant to § 144.28(f)(3) that the well lacks mechanical integrity, unless the Director requires immediate cessation;

(7) Upon receipt of notification from the Director pursuant to § 144.28(l) that the transferee has not demonstrated financial responsibility pursuant to § 144.28(d);

(8) For Class I and III wells:

(i) In States with approved programs, five years after the effective date of the UIC program unless a timely and complete permit application is pending the Director's decision; or

(ii) In States with programs administered by EPA, one year after the effective date of the UIC program unless a timely and complete permit application is pending the Director's decision; or

(9) For Class II wells (except enhanced recovery and hydrocarbon storage), five years after the effective date of the UIC program unless a timely and complete permit application is pending the Director's decision.

(d)Class II and III wells in existing fields or projects. Notwithstanding the prohibition in § 144.11, this section authorizes Class II and Class III wells or projects in existing fields or projects to continue normal operations until permitted, including construction, operation, and plugging and abandonment of wells as part of the operation, provided the owner or operator maintains compliance with all applicable requirements.

(e)Requirements. The owner or operator of a well authorized under this section shall comply with the applicable requirements of § 144.28 and part 147 of this chapter no later than one year after authorization.

[48 FR 14189, Apr. 1, 1983, as amended at 49 FR 20181, May 11, 1984; 58 FR 63895, Dec. 3, 1993]