Groundwater Discharge Permits

Montanans rely heavily on groundwater as the primary source of drinking water for many rural domestic water supplies as well as public water systems. Groundwater is also important for irrigation, livestock, and indirectly for thermoelectric power. Montana’s programs for the protection and remediation of groundwater are driven by the need to keep groundwater safe from contamination and to protect and support the current and future uses of groundwater

  Apply or Renew Online - FACTS  

The Montana Groundwater Pollution Control System (MGWPCS) program issues groundwater discharge permits to owners of potential sources of pollution to state groundwater. Typical permitted facilities include residential wastewater treatment systems, metal ore mills, lumber mills, wood product manufacturers, breweries, and community water treatment plants.

The Montana Water Quality Act (§75-5-605 ) requires a valid permit for the following activities:

(a) construct, modify, or operate a disposal system that discharges into any state waters;

(b) construct or use any outlet for the discharge of sewage, industrial wastes, or other wastes into any state waters; or

(c) discharge sewage, industrial wastes, or other wastes into any state waters.

MGWPCS permits are for discharge to state groundwaters. They are not applicable for discharges occurring within the boundaries of federally recognized Indian Lands. For additional information on discharges occurring within Indian Lands please refer to the USEPA Underground Injection Control Program

MGWPCS permits may also not be applicable for discharges located near state surface waters. For additional information on surface water discharge permits, please refer to the Surface Water Discharge (MPDES) program.

An individual MGWPCS permit is a stand-alone permit issued for a site-specific activity. Each individual permit may differ as they are based on the specifics of each discharge site and of each proposed discharge activity.

Each individual permit is placed into a category based on the type of wastewater to be discharged; either domestic (e.g. sinks, toilets, showers) or non-domestic (industrial or other wastewater). The most convenient way to apply or renew an individual permit is to use our online system FACTS. To file a paper application please see information below.

Groundwater Permits

Water Protection Bureau 444-5546

Chris Boe | 406-444-6762

Richard Morse | 444-7450

Eric Sivers, Groundwater Section Supervisor | 406-444-4806