Shawn Bennett of Energy In Depth:

"In a recent article from Mother Jones about wastewater disposal in Ohio, the writer (Thomas Stackpole) unfortunately focused more on hysteria than the facts.  As just one example, the author asserted that Ohio has looser regulations than our neighbors, a statement that is simply is not true.  In fact, Ohio has some of the most robust regulations on the books – and they’re actually more stringent than what is required by even the U.S. EPA!  In an effort to clear the air, let’s fact check some of the more erroneous claims made in this story to allow people to learn the truth.

Mother Jones: “More than 200 disposal wells dot the state, which has looser regulations than its neighbors.”


  • Rules and regulations for Class II injection wells are created and enforced by the U.S. EPA’s Underground Injection Control (UIC) program.  Ohio, like every other state, can not create regulations looser than what the EPA establishes.
  • Whenever new rules are placed into effect at the federal level, Ohio must follow them, perSection 1425 of the Safe Drinking Water Act.  Section 1425 mandates that states demonstrate that their existing standards are effective in preventing endangerment of drinking water in the United States.
  • In 1983, Ohio’s Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) received primacy over its Class II well program.  In order to gain primacy, ODNR had to demonstrate its rules met or exceeded the federal UIC program.
  • Ohio’s regulations are stronger than the regulations set forth by the EPA’s UIC program. Ohio’s rules include unannounced inspections every 11-12 weeks (instead of one inspection per year), continuous mechanical integrity monitoring, and seismic testing and monitoring – just to name a few."


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