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Utah Underground Injection Control (UIC) Program


  • Abandoned Well
    A well whose use has been permanently discontinued or which is in a state of disrepair such that it cannot be used for its intended purpose or for observation purposes.
  • Application
    Standard forms for applying for a permit, including any additions, revisions or modifications.
  • Aquifer
    A geologic formation or any part thereof that is capable of yielding significant water to a well or spring.
  • Area of Review
    The zone of endangering influence or fixed area radius determined in accordance with the provisions of 40 CFR 146.6.


  • Background Data
    The constituents or parameters and the concentrations or measurements which describe water quality and water quality variability prior to surface or subsurface discharge.
  • Barrel
    42 (U.S.) gallons at 60 degrees F and atmospheric pressure.


  • Casing
    A pipe or tubing of appropriate material, of varying diameter and weight, lowered into a borehole during or after drilling in order to support the sides of the hole and thus prevent the walls from caving, to prevent loss of drilling mud into porous ground, or to prevent water, gas, or other fluid from entering or leaving the hole.
  • Casing Pressure
    The pressure within the casing or between the casing and tubing at the wellhead.
  • Catastrophic Collapse
    The sudden and utter failure of overlying “strata” caused by removal of underlying materials.
  • Cementing
    The operation whereby a cement slurry is pumped into a drilled hole and/or forced behind the casing.
  • Cesspool
    A “drywell” that receives untreated sanitary waste containing human excreta, and which sometimes has an open bottom and/or perforated sides.
  • Confining Bed
    A body of impermeable or distinctly less permeable material stratigraphically adjacent to one or more aquifers.
  • Confining Zone
    A geological formation, group of formations, or part of a formation that is capable of limiting fluid movement above an injection zone.
  • Contaminant
    Any physical, chemical, biological, or radiological substance or matter in water.
  • Conventional Mine
    An open pit or underground excavation for the production of minerals.


  • Disposal Well
    A well used for the disposal of fluids into a subsurface stratum.
  • Drilling Mud
    Mud of not less than 36 viscosity (A.P.I. Full Funnel Method) and a weight of not less than nine pounds per gallon.
  • Drywell
    A well, other than an improved sinkhole or subsurface fluid distribution system, completed above the water table so that its bottom and sides are typically dry except when receiving fluids.


  • Exempted Aquifer
    An aquifer or a portion thereof that meets the criteria in the definition of “underground source of drinking water” but which has been exempted according to the procedures of 40 CFR 144.7.
  • Existing Injection Well
    An “injection well” other than a “new injection well.”
  • Experimental Technology
    A technology which has not been proven feasible under the conditions in which it is being tested.


  • Fault
    A surface or zone of rock fracture along which there has been a displacement.
  • Flow Rate
    The volume per time unit given to the flow of gases or other fluid substance which emerges from an orifice, pump, turbine or passes along a conduit or channel.
  • Fluid
    Material or substance which flows or moves whether in a semisolid, liquid, sludge, gas, or any other form or state.
  • Formation
    A body of rock characterized by a degree of lithologic homogeneity which is prevailingly, but not necessarily, tabular and is mappable on the earth’s surface or traceable in the subsurface.
  • Formation Fluid
    “Fluid” present in a “formation” under natural conditions as opposed to introduced fluids, such as drilling mud.


  • Generator
    Any person, by site location, whose act or process produces hazardous waste identified or listed in 40 CFR Part 261.
  • Groundwater
    Water below the ground surface in a zone of saturation.


  • Hazardous Waste
    A hazardous waste as defined in R315-2-3.
  • Hazardous Waste Management Facility
    All contiguous land, structures, other appurtenances, and improvements on the land used for treating, storing, or disposing of hazardous waste. A facility may consist of several treatment, storage, or disposal operational units (for example, one or more landfills, surface impoundments, or combination of them).


  • Improved Sinkhole
    A naturally occurring karst depression or other natural crevice found in volcanic terrain and other geologic settings which have been anthropogenically modified for the purpose of directing and emplacing fluids into the subsurface.
  • Injection Well
    A well into which fluids are being injected for subsurface emplacement of the fluids.
  • Injection Zone
    A geological “formation,” group of formations, or part of a formation receiving fluids through a well.


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  • Lithology
    The description of rocks on the basis of their physical and chemical characteristics.


  • Monitoring Well
    A well used to measure groundwater levels and to obtain water samples for water quality analysis.


  • New Injection Well
    An injection well which began injection after January 19, 1983.


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  • Packer
    A device lowered into a well to produce a fluid-tight seal within the casing.
  • Plugging
    The act or process of stopping the flow of water, oil, or gas into or out of a formation through a borehole or well penetrating that formation.
  • Plugging Record
    A systematic listing of permanent or temporary abandonment of water, oil, gas, test, exploration and waste injection wells, and may contain a well log, description of amounts and types of plugging material used, the method employed for plugging, a description of formations which are sealed and a graphic log of the well showing formation location, formation thickness, and location of plugging structures.
  • Point of Injection
    The last accessible sampling point prior to waste fluids being released into the subsurface environment through a Class V injection well. For example, the point of injection of a Class V septic system might be the distribution box – the last accessible sampling point before the waste fluids drain into the underlying soils.  For a drywell, it is likely to be the well bore itself.
  • Pressure
    The total load or force per unit area acting on a surface.
  • Project
    A group of wells in a single operation.


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  • Radioactive Waste
    Any waste which contains radioactive material in concentrations which exceed those listed in 10 CFR Part 20, Appendix B, Table 2 Column 2.


  • Sanitary Waste
    Liquid or solid wastes originating solely from humans and human activities, such as wastes collected from toilets, showers, wash basins, sinks used for cleaning domestic areas, sinks used for food preparation, clothes washing operations, and sinks or washing machines where food and beverage serving dishes, glasses, and utensils are cleaned. Sources of these wastes may include single or multiple residences, hotels and motels, restaurants, bunkhouses, schools, ranger stations, crew quarters, guard stations, campgrounds, picnic grounds, day-use recreation areas, other commercial facilities, and industrial facilities provided the waste is not mixed with industrial waste.
  • Septic System
    A “well” that is used to emplace sanitary waste below the surface and is typically comprised of a septic tank and subsurface fluid distribution system or disposal system.
  • Stratum (Plural Strata)
    A single sedimentary bed or layer, regardless of thickness, that consists of generally the same kind of rock material.
  • Subsidence
    The lowering of the natural land surface in response to earth movements; lowering of fluid pressure; removal of underlying supporting material by mining or solution of solids, either artificially or from natural causes; compaction due to wetting (Hydrocompaction); oxidation of organic matter in soils; or added load on the land surface.
  • Subsurface Fluid Distribution System
    An assemblage of perforated pipes, drain tiles, or other similar mechanisms intended to distribute fluids below the surface of the ground.
  • Surface Casing
    The first string of well casing to be installed in the well.


  • Total Dissolved Solids (TDS)
    The total residue (filterable) as determined by use of the method specified in 40 CFR. Part 136 Table 1B.
  • Transferee
    The owner or operator receiving ownership and/or operational control of the well.
  • Transferor
    The owner or operator transferring ownership and/or operational control of the well.


  • Underground Injection
    A “well injection.”
  • Underground Source of Drinking Water (USDW)
    An aquifer or a portion thereof which:

    • Supplies any public water system, or which contains a sufficient quantity of ground water to supply a public water system; and,
      • currently supplies drinking water for human consumption; or,
      • contains fewer than 10,000 mg/l total dissolved solids (TDS); and,
    • is not an exempted aquifer. (See R317-7-4 of the Utah Administrative Rules for the UIC Program and 40 CFR 144.7 and 40 CFR 146.4).


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  • Well
    A bored, drilled or driven shaft whose depth is greater than the largest surface dimension; or a dug hole whose depth is greater than the largest surface dimension; or an improved sinkhole; or a subsurface fluid distribution system.
  • Well Injection
    The subsurface emplacement of fluids through a well.
  • Well Monitoring
    The measurement, by on-site instruments or laboratory methods, of the quality of water in a well.
  • Well Plug
    A watertight and gas-tight seal installed in a borehole or well to prevent movement of fluids.
  • Well Stimulation
    Several processes used to clean the well bore, enlarge channels, and increase pore space in the interval to be injected thus making it possible for wastewater to move more readily into the formation, and includes:

    • Acidizing
    • Blasting
    • Hydraulic Fracturing
    • Jetting
    • Surging


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Contact Porter Henze (pkhenze@utah.gov) with questions or comments.

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