| (6) An areal variance granted under the provisions
of this subsection may be modified, terminated, or suspended by the
commission after notice and opportunity for hearing is provided to
each person shown on commission records to operate an oil or gas lease
in the area in which the proposed modification, termination, or suspension
would apply. If a hearing on a proposal to modify, terminate, or suspend
an areal variance is held, any applications filed subsequent to the
date notice of hearing is given must include the area-of-review information
required under paragraph (1) of this subsection pending issuance of
a final order.
(f) Casing. Injection wells shall be cased and the
casing cemented in compliance with §3.13 of this title (relating
to Casing, Cementing, Drilling, and Completion Requirements) in such
a manner that the injected fluids will not endanger oil, gas, or geothermal
resources and will not endanger freshwater formations not productive
of oil, gas, or geothermal resources.
(g) Special equipment.
(1) Tubing and packer. Wells drilled or converted for
injection shall be equipped with tubing set on a mechanical packer.
Packers shall be set no higher than 200 feet below the known top of
cement behind the long string casing but in no case higher than 150
feet below the base of usable quality water. For purposes of this
section, the term "tubing" refers to a string of pipe through which
injection may occur and which is neither wholly nor partially cemented
in place. A string of pipe that is wholly or partially cemented in
place is considered casing for purposes of this section.
(2) Pressure valve. The wellhead shall be equipped
with a pressure observation valve on the tubing and for each annulus
of the well.
(3) Exceptions. The commission or its delegate may
grant an exception to any provision of this paragraph upon proof of
good cause. If the commission or its delegate denies an exception,
the operator shall have a right to a hearing upon request. After hearing,
the examiner shall recommend a final action by the commission.
(h) Well record. Within 30 days after the completion
or conversion of an injection well, the operator shall file in duplicate
in the district office a complete record of the well on the appropriate
form which shows the current completion.
(i) Monitoring and reporting.
(1) The operator shall monitor the injection pressure
and injection rate of each injection well on at least a monthly basis,
or on a more frequent basis for a disposal well permitted under this
section as required by the commission under conditions described in
subsection (b)(1)(D) of this section.
(2) The results of the monitoring shall be reported
annually, or on a more frequent basis for a disposal well permitted
under this section as required by the commission under conditions
described in subsection (b)(1)(D) of this section, to the commission
on the prescribed form.
(3) All monitoring records shall be retained by the
operator for at least five years.
(4) The operator shall report to the appropriate District
Office within 24 hours any significant pressure changes or other monitoring
data indicating the presence of leaks in the well.
(1) Purpose. The mechanical integrity of an injection
well shall be evaluated by conducting pressure tests to determine
whether the well tubing, packer, or casing have sufficient mechanical
integrity to meet the performance standards of this rule, or by alternative
testing methods under paragraph (5) of this subsection.
(2) Applicability. Mechanical integrity of each injection
well shall be demonstrated in accordance with provisions of paragraphs
(4) and (5) of this subsection prior to initial use. In addition,
mechanical integrity shall be tested periodically thereafter as described
in paragraph (3) of this subsection.
(A) Each injection well completed with surface casing
set and cemented through the entire interval of protected usable-quality
water shall be tested for mechanical integrity at least once every
(B) In addition to testing required under subparagraph
(A), each injection well shall be tested for mechanical integrity
after every workover of the well.
(C) An injection well that is completed without surface
casing set and cemented through the entire interval of protected usable-quality
ground water shall be tested at the frequency prescribed in the injection
(D) The commission or its delegate may prescribe a
schedule and mail notification to operators to allow for orderly and
timely compliance with the requirements in subparagraph (A) and subparagraph
(B) of this paragraph. Such testing schedule shall not apply to an
injection well for which an injection well permit has been issued
but the well has not been drilled or converted to injection.
(4) Pressure tests.
(A) Test pressure.
(i) The test pressure for wells equipped to inject
through tubing and packer shall equal the maximum authorized injection
pressure or 500 psig, whichever is less, but shall be at least 200
(ii) The test pressure for wells that are permitted
for injection through casing shall equal the maximum permitted injection
pressure or 200 psig, whichever is greater.
(B) Pressure stabilization. The test pressure shall
stabilize within 10% of the test pressure required in subparagraph
(A) of this paragraph prior to commencement of the test.
(C) Pressure differential. A pressure differential
of at least 200 psig shall be maintained between the test pressure
on the tubing-casing annulus and the tubing pressure.
(D) Test duration. A pressure test shall be conducted
for a duration of 30 minutes when the test medium is liquid or for
60 minutes when the test medium is air or gas.
(E) Pressure recorder. Except for tests witnessed by
a commission representative or wells permitted for injection through
casing, a pressure recorder shall be used to monitor and record the
tubing-casing annulus pressure during the test. The recorder clock
shall not exceed 24 hours. The recorder scale shall be set so that
the test pressure is 30 to 70% of full scale, unless otherwise authorized
by the commission or its delegate.
(F) Test fluid.
(i) The tubing-casing annulus fluid used in a pressure
test shall be liquid for wells that inject liquid unless the commission
or its delegate authorizes use of a different test fluid for good
(ii) The tubing-casing annulus fluid used in a pressure
test shall contain no additives that may affect the sensitivity or
otherwise reduce the effectiveness of the test.
(G) Pressure test results. The commission or its delegate
will consider, in evaluating the results of a test, the level of pollution
risk that loss of well integrity would cause. Factors that may be
taken into account in assessing pollution risk include injection pressure,
frequency of testing and monitoring, and whether there is sufficient
surface casing to cover all zones containing usable-quality water.
A pressure test may be rejected by the commission or its delegate
after consideration of the following factors:
(i) the degree of pressure change during the test,
(ii) the level of risk to usable-quality water if mechanical
integrity of the well is lost; and
(iii) whether circumstances surrounding the administration
of the test make the test inconclusive.
(5) Alternative testing methods.
(A) As an alternative to the testing required in paragraph
(2) of this subsection, the tubing-casing annulus pressure may be
monitored and included on the annual monitoring report required by
subsection (i) of this section, with the authorization of the commission
or its delegate and provided that there is no indication of problems
with the well. Wells that are approved for tubing-casing annulus monitoring
under this paragraph shall be tested in the manner provided under
paragraph (3) of this subsection at least once every ten years after
January 1, 1990.
(B) The commission or its delegate grant an exception
for viable alternative tests or surveys or may require alternative
tests or surveys as a permit condition.
(6) The operator shall notify the appropriate district
office at least 48 hours prior to the testing. Testing shall not commence
before the end of the 48-hour period unless authorized by the district
(7) A complete record of all tests shall be filed in
duplicate in the district office within 30 days after the testing.
(8) In the case of permits issued under this section
prior to the effective date of this amendment which require pressure
testing more frequently than once every five years, the commission's
delegate may, by letter of authorization, reduce the required frequency
of pressure tests, provided that such tests are required at least
once every three years. The commission shall consider the permit to
have been amended to require pressure tests at the frequency specified
in the letter of authorization.
(k) Area Permits. A person may apply for an area permit
that authorizes injection into new or converted wells located within
the area specified in the area permit. For purposes of this subsection,
the term "permit area" shall mean the area covered or proposed to
be covered by an area permit. Except as specifically provided in this
subsection, the provisions of subsections (a) - (j) of this section
shall apply in the case of an area permit and all injection wells
converted, completed, operated, or maintained in accordance with that
permit. Except as otherwise specified in the area permit, once an
area permit has been issued, the operator may apply to operate individual
wells within the permit area as injection wells as specified in paragraph
(3) of this subsection.
(1) An application for an area permit must be accompanied
by an application for at least one injection well. The applicant must:
(A) identify the maximum number of injection wells
that will be operated within the permit area;
(B) identify the depth(s) of usable-quality water within
the permit area, as determined by the Groundwater Advisory Unit of
the Oil and Gas Division;
(C) for each existing well in the permit area that
may be converted to injection under the area permit, provide a wellbore
diagram that specifies the casing and liner sizes and depths, packer
setting depth, types and volumes of cement, and the cement tops for
the well. A single wellbore diagram may be submitted for multiple
wells that have the same configuration, provided that each well with
that type of configuration is identified on the wellbore diagram and
the diagram identifies the deepest cement top for each string of casing
among all the wells covered by that diagram.
(D) provide a wellbore diagram(s) showing the type(s)
of completion(s) that will be used for injection wells drilled after
the date the application for the area permit is filed, including casing
and liner sizes and depths and a statement indicating that such wells
will be cemented in accordance with the cementing requirements of §3.13
of this title (relating to Casing, Cementing, Drilling, and Completion
Requirements) (Statewide Rule 13);
(E) identify the type or types of fluids that are proposed
to be injected into any well within the permit area;
(F) identify the depths from top to bottom of the injection
interval throughout the permit area;
(G) specify the maximum surface injection pressure
for any well in the permit area covered by the area permit;
(H) specify the maximum amount of fluid that will be
injected daily into any individual well within the permit area as
well as the maximum cumulative amount of fluid that will be injected
daily in the permit area;
(I) in lieu of the area-of-review required under subsection
(e) of this section and subject to the area-of-review variance provisions
of subsection (e) of this section, review the data of public record
for wells that penetrate the proposed injection interval within the
permit area and the area 1/4 mile beyond the outer boundary of the
permit area to determine if all abandoned wells have been plugged
in a manner that will prevent the movement of fluids from the injection
interval into freshwater strata. The applicant shall identify in the
application the wells which appear from the review of such public
records to be unplugged or improperly plugged and any other unplugged
or improperly plugged wells of which the applicant has knowledge.
The applicant shall also identify in the application the date of plugging
of each abandoned well within the permit area and the area 1/4 mile
beyond the outer boundary of the permit area; and
(J) furnish a map showing the location of each existing
well that may be converted to injection under the area permit and
the location of each well that the operator intends, at the time of
application, to drill within the permit area for use for injection.
The map shall be keyed to identify the configuration of all such wells
as described in subparagraphs (C) and (D) of this paragraph.