Underground Injection Control (UIC)

Underground Injection Control Grants

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What grant funding is available under the UIC program?

  • UIC program funding grants, referred to as UIC State and Tribal Assistance Grants (STAG)
  • Competitive grant funding

UIC program grants

  • Primacy states - states that have received primary enforcement authority for the UIC program
  • Territories - U.S. territories that have primary enforcement authority for the UIC program
  • Tribes - federally recognized tribes that have primary enforcement authority for the UIC program
  • EPA - Regions that directly implement the UIC program in a state, U.S. territory, or within the boundaries of a federally recognized tribe

Competitive UIC grants

EPA provides funding for technical assistance and support to enhance communication and coordination between the EPA and states to protect drinking water sources.  The competitive UIC funding grantee works to develop and expand the capability of state and tribal programs to protect drinking water sources. 

These funds may be used by recipients to promote participation in meetings that improve the ability of states and tribes to protect drinking water sources.  Funding may also be used to support the travel expenses of non-federal personnel to attend appropriate meetings.

The purpose of the cooperative agreement is to:

  • Provide leadership and support to states on emerging/high priority issues
  • Sponsor (or cosponsor) annual meetings for UIC and source water protection programs
  • Support and facilitate state participation in the federal/state UIC national database
  • Disseminate and share information with states, tribes, and other non-federal partners

Funding for approved projects is provided in annual increments over a three-year period.  The current application period is closed.  The next competitive funding application period opens in October 2016 and will be announced in a Federal Register notice.  The announcement will include instructions for completing the application.

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How UIC program grants are allocated 

Each year, grant money is allocated to help UIC primacy programs enforce the minimum federal UIC requirements. These funds are authorized by Congress under Section 1443 of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). These state and tribal assistance grants are distributed by EPA's national UIC program. The total annual amount of the grant varies slightly, but is approximately $11 million per year.

Individual state and tribal grant allotments are determined from a formula based on criteria identified in the SDWA. The formula directs available resources toward the highest risk wells in order to achieve the maximum level of public health protection. The formula considers:

  • Well status - the inventory of injection wells in classes I to VI that are active, temporarily abandoned, or under construction are included in the formula.
  • Well type - the grant formula targets classes of wells that have the greatest potential to contaminate an underground source of drinking water (USDW) and threaten public health
  • State population - the number of people to be protected from the risks posed by injection activities has an effect on the grant allocation.
  • State size - this variable influences resources needed to maximize field activities such as inspections of permitted facilities to ensure compliance with safe operating requirements or to locate and address endangering injection wells.

Read more about injection well inventories.


How grant funds are allocated to non-primacy tribal UIC programs

Grant money is provided annually to EPA Regions to support UIC program efforts to protect drinking water sources on tribal lands. Seven percent of the overall UIC grant is set aside for tribes. These funds are distributed to the Regions using a formula similar to the grant formula used for primacy programs.

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