Injection Wells Action Alert

Alexander Stone reefkeeper at
Tue Jan 4 03:49:25 EST 2000

Injection Wells Action Alert!

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) is considering
relaxing the rules governing injection of sewage and other industrial
waste into deep wells in Florida. USEPA Secretary Carol Browner will
receive recommendations from her staff in late December, and is expected
to proceed with rule-making and two public hearings during January. Please
try to contact her office as soon as possible to encourage her to
strengthen the rules governing injected waste to protect underground
sources of drinking water and coral reefs from the impacts of
nutrient-laden sewage and other contaminants.

Pursuant to the Clean Water Act, current regulations require that Class
One Deep Injection Wells provide containment of injected effluent so that
it does not jeopardize underground sources of drinking water.
Unfortunately, in South Florida, the porous geology of the area allows the
injected waste to migrate through cracks and fissures, upwelling into
fresh water aquifers and coastal areas that contain coral reefs. Corals
need clear, clean nutrient-free waters to thrive and an overabundance of
nutrients has led to massive macroalgal blooms along the Palm Beach coast.
Lack of confinement has been documented in over a dozen wells in South
Florida to date.

The proposed new rule would allow Class I Well permits to be issued by the
State of Florida providing that the effluent is disinfected and that it
can be demonstrated that it will not be harmful. This regulation would
allow the lack of confinement to continue; it should specifically require
that harmful nutrients be removed from the waste stream prior to injection.

Please contact Carol Browner at the USEPA, 401 M St., SW, Washington D.C.,
20460 today to urge consideration of stringer rules for Class I Deep
Injection Wells. Reef Relief recommends that all effluent pumped into
wells be treated to Advanced Wastewater Standards (AWT) that removes the
harmful nutrients that are effecting coral reefs. Florida¹s coral reefs
are suffering from the effects of nutrient loading; more must be done to
protect them, not less.

*** Many Thanks to Reef Relief for preparing this Action Alert***

For more information, check out the website located at:

and the Reef Relief action alert located at:

or contact Reef Relief at (305) 294-3100
email:  reef at

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