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Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Underground Injection Control (UIC) Program; EPA ICR No. 0370.19; OMB Control No. 2040-0042

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).




In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), this document announces that EPA is planning to submit a request to renew an existing approved Information Collection Request (ICR) to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). This ICR is scheduled to expire on April 30, 2007. Before submitting the ICR to OMB for review and approval, EPA is soliciting comments on specific aspects of the proposed information collection as described below.


Comments must be submitted on or before April 30, 2007.


Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2003-0017, by each item in the text, by one of the following methods:

  • Follow the on-line instructions for submitting comments.
  • E-mail:
  • Mail: Environmental Protection Agency, Mailcode: MC 4101T, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460.

Instructions: Direct your comments to Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2003-0017 identified by the Docket ID. EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change and may be made available online at, including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes information claimed to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Do not submit information that you consider to be CBI or otherwise protected through or e-mail. The website is an “anonymous access” system, which means EPA will not know your identity or contact information unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you send an e-mail comment directly to EPA without going through, your e-mail address will be automatically captured and included as part of the comment that is placed in the public docket and made available on the Internet. If you submit an electronic comment, EPA recommends that you include your name and other contact information in the body of your comment and with any disk or CD-ROM you submit. If EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, EPA may not be able to consider your comment. Electronic files should avoid the use of Start Printed Page 8984special characters, any form of encryption, and be free of any defects or viruses. For additional information about EPA's public docket visit the EPA Docket Center homepage at​epahome/​dockets.htm.

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Robert E. Smith, Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, Drinking Water Protection Division/Underground Injection Control Program, Mailcode: 4606M, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: 202-564-3895; fax number: 202-564-3756; e-mail address:

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How Can I Access the Docket and/or Submit Comments?

EPA has established a public docket for this ICR under Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2003-0017, which is available for online viewing at, or in person viewing at the Water Docket, Docket in the EPA Docket Center (EPA/DC), EPA West, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave., NW., Washington, DC. The EPA/DC Public Reading Room is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Reading Room is 202-566-1744, and the telephone for the Water Docket is 202-566-2426.

Use to obtain a copy of the draft collection of information, submit or view public comments, access the index listing of the contents of the docket, and to access those documents in the public docket that are available electronically. Once in the system, select “search,” then key in the docket ID number identified in this document.

What Information Is EPA Particularly Interested in?

Pursuant to section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA, EPA specifically solicits comments and information to enable it to:

(i) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;

(ii) Evaluate the accuracy of the Agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;

(iii) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and

(iv) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. In particular, EPA is requesting comments from very small businesses (those that employ less than 25) on examples of specific additional efforts that EPA could make to reduce the paperwork burden for very small businesses affected by this collection.

What Should I Consider When I Prepare My Comments for EPA?

You may find the following suggestions helpful for preparing your comments:

1. Explain your views as clearly as possible and provide specific examples.

2. Describe any assumptions that you used.

3. Provide copies of any technical information and/or data you used that support your views.

4. If you estimate potential burden or costs, explain how you arrived at the estimate that you provide.

5. Offer alternative ways to improve the collection activity.

6. Make sure to submit your comments by the deadline identified under DATES.

7. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, be sure to identify the docket ID number assigned to this action in the subject line on the first page of your response. You may also provide the name, date, and Federal Register citation.

What Information Collection Activity or ICR Does This Apply to?

Affected entities: Entities potentially affected by this action are owners and operators underground injection wells, State Underground Injection Control (UIC) primacy agencies, and in some instances, U.S. EPA Regional offices and staff.

Title: Information Collection Request for the Underground Injection Control Program.

ICR numbers: EPA ICR No. 0370.19, OMB Control No. 2040-0042.

ICR status: This ICR is currently scheduled to expire on April 30, 2007. An Agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information, unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. The OMB control numbers for EPA's regulations in title 40 of the CFR, after appearing in the Federal Register when approved, are listed in 40 CFR part 9, are displayed either by publication in the Federal Register or by other appropriate means, such as on the related collection instrument or form, if applicable. The display of OMB control numbers in certain EPA regulations is consolidated in 40 CFR part 9.

Abstract: The Underground Injection Control (UIC) Program under the Safe Drinking Water Act established a Federal and State regulatory system to protect underground sources of drinking water (USDWs) from contamination by injected fluids. Injected fluids include over 9 billion gallons of hazardous waste per year and over two billion gallons of brine from oil and gas operations every day as well as automotive, industrial, sanitary and other wastes. Owners/operators of underground injection wells must obtain permits, conduct environmental monitoring, maintain records, and report results to EPA or the State UIC primacy agency. States must report to EPA on permittee compliance and related information. The mandatory information is reported using standardized forms and annual reports, and the regulations are codified at 40 CFR Parts 144 through 148. The data are used by UIC authorities to ensure the protection of underground sources of drinking water.

Burden Statement: The annual public reporting and recordkeeping burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 2.35 hours per response. Burden means the total time, effort, or financial resources expended by persons to generate, maintain, retain, or disclose or provide information to or for a Federal agency. This includes the time needed to review instructions; develop, acquire, install, and utilize technology and systems for the purposes of collecting, validating, and verifying information, processing and maintaining information, and disclosing and providing information; adjust the existing ways to comply with any previously applicable instructions and requirements which have subsequently changed; train personnel to be able to respond to a collection of information; search data sources; complete and review the collection of information; and transmit or otherwise disclose the information.

The ICR provides a detailed explanation of the Agency's estimate, which is only briefly summarized here:

Estimated total number of potential respondents: 38,824.

Frequency of response: yearly, semi-annually, quarterly, and other.

Estimated total average number of responses for each respondent: 10.96.

Estimated total annual burden hours: 1,000,648 hours.

Estimated total annual costs: $117,142,617. This includes an Start Printed Page 8985estimated burden cost of $34,934,361 and an estimated cost of $82,208,255 for capital investment or maintenance and operational costs.

In its “Terms of Clearance” for the current ICR, OMB asked EPA to report on its efforts to reduce burden on owners and operators of UIC injection wells. In response to this request, the Agency has undertaken an effort to study where further paperwork burden reduction is feasible. The UIC Program is reviewing UIC regulations requiring paperwork reporting/recordkeeping and then evaluating potential for burden reduction. Past efforts to reduce burden focused on analyzing data needs of the UIC Program and identifying ways to reduce burden on State primacy agencies that submit information to EPA. This effort resulted in reduced frequency with which states must submit several 7520 Federal reporting forms. Current efforts focus on how to reduce burden on owners and operators that submit specific 7520 owner/operator reporting forms. Areas of consideration are combining/revising some 7520 reporting forms, eliminating certain reporting requirements, eliminating data elements from the 7520 forms submitted by operators, reducing frequency and using options such as electronic data entry and transfer systems. EPA prepared a report that summarizes these efforts. This report can be found in the Water Docket for the UIC Program ICR under Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2003-0017 and is available for viewing in person at the EPA/DC Public Reading Room which is in the EPA Headquarters Library, Room Number 3334 in the EPA West Building, located at 1301 Constitution Ave., NW., Washington, DC.

Are There Changes in the Estimates From the Last Approval?

There is a decrease of 333,406 hours in the total estimated respondent burden compared with that identified in the ICR currently approved by OMB. This decrease primarily reflects abatement of permitting and closure under the 1999 Class V Rule; reduced Class V well inventory activities; and a reduction in the Class II inventory, particularly the number of Class II permit applications that operators will submit during the clearance period. These changes are adjustments.

What Is the Next Step in the Process for This ICR?

EPA will consider the comments received and amend the ICR as appropriate. The final ICR package will then be submitted to OMB for review and approval pursuant to 5 CFR 1320.12. At that time, EPA will issue another Federal Register notice pursuant to 5 CFR 1320.5(a)(1)(iv) to announce the submission of the ICR to OMB and the opportunity to submit additional comments to OMB. If you have any questions about this ICR or the approval process, please contact the technical person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

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Dated: February 23, 2007.

Cynthia C. Dougherty,

Director, Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water.

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[FR Doc. E7-3516 Filed 2-27-07; 8:45 am]