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Ground Water Program

Sources of high quality ground water underlie virtually all of Florida. Ninety percent of this state's population relies on these ground water resources for their drinking water. Additionally, over 50% of all other water needs including agricultural, industry, mining, and electric power generation are supplied by ground water resources. Ground water also serves as the source for Florida’s many springs and provides a significant input to many of Florida’s lakes and rivers.

In DEP, responsibility for ground water is distributed throughout the agency, but ground water quality on a regional scale is addressed in two programs, the Aquifer Protection and Ground Water Management Programs.

The Ground Water Management Program is responsible for evaluating and addressing ground water resources that adversely affect surface water quality as part of Florida’s Watershed Restoration Program. These activities include conducting assessments of the interaction of ground water with surface waters that are impaired, identifying causes of these impairments and helping to identify actions that can be taken to restore them. Much of this work focuses on springs, which are among the most treasured natural resources of the state. Other responsibilities of this section are to coordinate with other programs in the development of Florida’s Integrated Water Quality Assessment Report to EPA, manage spring research and monitoring, provide oversight of agricultural best management practice ground water monitoring studies, and participate in evaluations of new pesticides that have potential ground water impacts.

Ground Water Management activities include:

  • Ground Water – Surface Water Interaction & Basin Assessment
  • Springs Restoration
  • Ground Water and Springs Data Management
  • Agrichemical Effects – Pesticides & Best Management Practices (BMPs)

The Aquifer Protection Program is responsible for implementation and support of regulatory programs affecting ground water. The Department of Environmental Protection exercises regulatory authority over ground water quality under Chapter 62-520, F.A.C. In Florida the ground water standards are equivalent to the drinking water standards. By definition, a violation of any ground water standard or criterion constitutes pollution.

Regulatory programs within the Aquifer Protection Program include:

  • Underground Injection Control Program (UIC)
  • Regulation of Wells
  • Water Well Construction
  • Source Water and Wellhead Protection Programs
  • Ground Water Classes, Standards and Monitoring

Protection of ground water is integrated into many other Department Programs, including Solid Waste, Phosphogypsum, Industrial and Domestic Wastewater and Drinking Water. The following list provides links to some of the most frequently requested information:

Where do I go if I need information about:

Ground Water Cleanup Target Levels?

Discharge of Produced Ground Water from any Non-Contaminated Site Activity?

  • DEP Document 62-621.300(2), F.A.C.
    For additional information on rule and permit requirements, please contact the Industrial Wastewater Program at 850-245-8589. For specific sites, please contact the DEP District office covering the area where the proposed discharge will occur.

What is this tag on my well?

Water Well Contractors?

My Household Water Well?


Wells that serve public water systems?

What is Ground Water?

Aquifers in Florida

Glossary of Ground Water Terms

Monitoring Data


Rules & Forms


Ground Water Management

Aquifer Protection

Last updated: November 07, 2016

  2600 Blair Stone Road M.S. 3500   Tallahassee, Florida 32399   850-245-8336 (phone) / 850-245-8356 (fax) 
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