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SOUTH DAKOTA Department of
Agriculture & Natural Resources

Protecting South Dakota's Tomorrow...Today!
Joe Foss Building
523 E Capitol Ave
Pierre, SD 57501-3182
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Inspection, Compliance & Remediation Program

Underground Injection Control Fact Sheet


Class V Injection Wells:


The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has determined Class V injection wells associated with disposal of wastes must be closed, permitted, or rule authorized. In addition, as of April 5, 2000, no new Class V wells associated with automotive wastes or large capacity cesspools may be constructed.


Systems disposing of wastes, which are connected to drain fields or dry wells, whether they are associated with septic wastes or not, are considered Class V injection wells. A Class V injection well is used for disposal of non-hazardous semisolids, liquids, sludges, or gases, into or above an underground source of drinking water.


The following are some options for waste disposal at a facility. Hopefully, one of these options will assist you in determining how you can dispose of any wastewaters that would be or are produced by your facility.


1) Operate a dry shop using an absorbent that can be disposed of as a solid waste in a landfill (i.e. kitty litter, sawdust, etc.).


2) Disconnect the injection mechanism (drain field, dry well, etc.) from the septic tank and collect waste in a holding tank.


There are a couple options you may use to dispose of wastewater collected in a holding tank.


  • Have the holding tank pumped periodically and arrange for the fluids to be taken to a wastewater treatment facility.


If you plan to discharge any process water to a wastewater treatment plant, permission must first be granted by the city. The city may also require you to apply for a pretreatment industrial user permit to protect the city's treatment system. For more information pertaining to this, please contact the city. Some pretreatment may be required prior to acceptance at the wastewater treatment facility.


  • Have the liquid and sludge in the tank tested. If the liquid or sludge in the tank are not determined to be a hazardous waste, you may be able to land apply it. You will need to contact the Waste Management Program of the South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources at (605) 773-3153 if this is an option you are interested in.(this may also be a potential option for the disposal of any solid wastes/sludges from the bottom of the tank).


3) Recycle and reuse fluids through an on-site filter system. Car washes have recognized up to 75% reduction in water use.


4) Connect to the sanitary sewer system, if available, and if the wastewater treatment facility can accept wastes. Some municipal systems may require pretreatment (see above).


5) Treat contaminated water with an on site waste water treatment system. Injection of treated water requires a permit that is obtainable from EPA and requires the injected fluid to meet federal drinking water standards. EPA will grant a permit if concentrations are below Federal Safe Drinking Water Standards. Sampling is required a minimum of every six months and may have a cost of up to $700-1500 per sample, dependent upon the waste being disposed of; EPA will also sample periodically to obtain an independent analysis. This method can turn out to be a very costly long-term solution.


6) Apply to EPA for an Underground Injection Control permit or rule authorization without treating the contaminated water. See number 5 for permitting details. Rule authorization - this is an allowance to inject by EPA and may be granted if the plans and specifications submitted to EPA show that no degradation of the water has taken place.


7) Construct a non-leaking evaporation pond that does not allow any fluids to escape to the environment. Please submit design plans and specifications to the department’s Surface Water Quality Program prior to commencement of construction of the pond. The plans and specifications need to be prepared by a professional engineer.


8) Construct an above ground storage tank to accept the fluids for re-use.


9) Any combination of the above or other novel option approved by EPA.


If discharge to the drain field remains the preferred option, an Underground Injection Control permit or rule authorization is required from EPA. For more details on EPA's requirements please contact Douglas Minter at (303) 312-6079.


An on-site wastewater system which receives strictly domestic sewage must comply with South Dakota's "Individual and Small On-site Wastewater Systems" regulations. Plans and specifications for all waste water treatment systems must be submitted to the Department for review and approval by the Surface Water Quality Program. South Dakota has developed a certification program for septic tank installers. This program ensures that on-site wastewater systems are properly installed.


You can contact the Surface Water Quality Program at (605) 773-3351, access the information on septic systems at or click here to view the list of Certified Installers of On-site Wastewater Systems.  If you have any questions on surface discharge of sump wastes, some information may be found at

If you have any additional questions regarding this subject, please contact Brian Walsh at (605) 773-3296.