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Oregon Groundwater: What you need to know

Governing Law and Regulations

Groundwater Protection Act (GPA): Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) 468B.150 to 468B.190

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General groundwater protection standards: Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR) 340-040-0001 to 340-040-0090

Permitted operations: OAR 340-040-0030

Area of groundwater concern: ORS 468B.175 to 468B.177

Groundwater management area: ORS 468B.180 to 468B.184

Wellhead protection program: OAR 340-040-0140 to 340-040-0210

Water rights permits: OAR 690-310-0000 to 690-310-0280

Regulatory Agencies

Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) Land Division Hazardous Waste Program

DEQ Water Quality Division Groundwater Program

Water Resources Department (WRD)

Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS) Drinking Water Program

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 10

See ADDRESSES & CONTACTS for addresses and telephone numbers.

See national section for basic information and federal regulations.

Comparison: State vs. Federal

Rules. Oregon has established numerical groundwater quality reference levels for the establishment of permit-specific and remedial action concentration limits. The state considers drinking water supply the highest beneficial use for groundwater.

Oregon incorporates by reference the federal rules for groundwater monitoring at permitted and interim-status treatment, storage, and disposal facilities (TSDFs). The GPA addresses nonpoint source contamination and permitted discharges in Oregon. See the national section GROUNDWATER for additional information.

The state requires that all individuals and companies that appropriate groundwater be covered under a water rights permit.

Administration and enforcement. DEQ's Land Division administers and enforces the groundwater rules for TSDFs in ...


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State Requirements

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Oregon Groundwater Resources

Groundwater Products

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