Residential Ground Water- Individual Residential Wells
Although permits for use of groundwater are typically required under state law, no such permit is needed for residential groundwater use, because it is considered a necessary component of a habitable structure. In fact, it need not be shown on the application for the habitable structure. S.C. Code Regs. 30-15(F)(5). The single family residence or household (assuming noncommercial use) is exempt from the Groundwater Use and Reporting Act under S.C. CODE ANN. Section 49-5-70 (A)(4).
However, there are state regulations that set minimum standards for the construction, maintenance and operation of wells, including individual residential wells. The applicable regulations depend on what sort of well you have decided to install - a drilled or bored well. As is true of all of environmental regulation, particular words that have specific meanings under the law so be sure to follow the links to all the important information, including the definitions section. This page contains the general rules for all residential wells using groundwater as their source.
All residential groundwater wells must comply with the following:
Any well falls in one of the following categories:
S.C. Code Regs. 61-71 (B)(32), available here.
All individual residential wells must be located at the following minimum distances from the following potential sources of contamination:
S.C. Code Regs. 61-71(E)(1), available here.
If the following conditions exist the well's distance from a potential source of contamination must be changed after consultation with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC):
S.C. Code Regs. 61-71(E)(2), available here.
Click here for information on specific rules for individual residential and irrigation wells.
Click here for information on rules for bored individual residential and irrigation wells. Note that the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control has a very helpful website on residential wells available here.
Request for variances must be directed to the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) in writing and will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Only requests for an alternative construction method that ensures equivalent protection of groundwater and public health when the normal regulations cannot be met will be considered. Any variance can be revoked by DHEC as DHEC deems appropriate. S.C. Code Regs. 61-71 (C), available here.
If you plan on drilling your own well please click here for a direct link on DHEC's website about Residential Wells about drilling yourself.
You can find the a lot of links about residential wells on DHEC's website at this location.
Last Updated October 29, 2010
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