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Drywell Program

Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plans and Spill Prevention Control and Countermeasures

Benefit:  – Prevention of costly remediation of contaminated areas.

Prevents costly fines from accidental releases.

Preventative measures are more economical to implement than remediation, and are better for the environment.  Quite often, we have seen clients who wished that they had taken the economical route of prevention.  As the old saying goes “an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of the cure”.

What we offer is an ability to retrofit current property dynamics, and develop plans that prevent contamination of subsurface soils, groundwater, and sewer systems through storm drains or drywells.  We do this through a thorough identifying of current conditions and developing potential solutions, rather than just presenting a problem that needs to be fixed.

We also offer this service in the planning stage of a project.  By doing this, problems are solved before they ever happen.  This also allows architects and engineers to make adjustments prior to them being forced to do so.  By utilizing this service, clients are able to streamline potential environmental issues, present a good environmental package to planning commissions, and demonstrate to lenders due diligence, and show responsibility as members of the communities.


Every company located in Arizona who owns or plans to install a drywell are required to register the drywell with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ).  Drywells are also required to be registered when decommissioning or abandoning.  Drywells can only receive storm water runoff or discharges that are exempted by state regulations.  If other fluids have been directed to the drywell, it is subject to the aquifer protection permit (APP) program and/or closure requirements, and may be considered an underground injection well that requires both ADEQ and US EPA permitting.

Drywell photo


If a drywell owner suspects contamination, or based on ADEQ inspection or a complaint, a drywell screening and investigation is required.  The drywell investigation is used to determine the presence and extent of the contamination.  CES has performed several drywell screens to inform our clients and ADEQ of the concerns revolving around the drywell, while being cost-sensitive to our clients.

Aquifer Protection Permitting

Drywells may be regulated under the Aquifer Protection Permit (APP) program of ADEQ.  An APP may be required of a facility when hazardous materials are stored, used, loaded or treated in an area that drains to a drywell, or when a drywell receives discharges other than storm water.  The determination as to whether a drywell is regulated or not rests with ADEQ.  CES is experienced in supplying the drywell owner/registrant with a comprehensive Determination of Applicability form and accompanying application for submittal to the ADEQ.  Also, the APP may require the drywell owner/registrant to develop a Best Management Practices Plan (BMPP) in order to minimize the possibility of contaminating soil, groundwater or surface water from contaminated runoff.