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Delineated Areas

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (department) administers the Delineated Areas Program as authorized in Chapter 373, Florida Statutes (F.S.), Part III, and the requirements of Chapter 62-524, Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.), New Potable Water Well Permitting in Delineated Areas. The primary objectives of the program are to protect public health and groundwater resources, and to promote the cost-effective remediation of contaminated potable water supplies. These objectives are achieved through proper permitting of potable water wells constructed in delineated areas of known groundwater contamination, application of more stringent well construction requirements, mandatory well water testing, and clearance of the well for potable use.

Under the Delineated Areas Program, approximately 427,897 acres in 38 counties throughout the state of Florida have been delineated as areas of known groundwater contamination. Of these areas, the majority are delineated for ethylene dibromide (EDB) contamination, with a few areas delineated for solvents and gasoline contamination. Delineated areas are adopted by rule under Chapter 62-524, F.A.C., and are typically drawn and mapped using a 1,000-foot protective setback distance from a contaminated well or site.

The department implements the Delineated Areas Program through a coordinated effort with the Florida regional water management districts (WMDs), the Florida Department of Health (DOH), and local county health departments (CHD). Within delineated areas, the WMDs or their delegated permitting authority are responsible for the permitting and inspection of all new potable water well construction, repair and abandonment. All new potable water well construction within delineated areas must meet the construction requirements in Chapters 62-524 and 62-532, F.A.C., and the WMD’s water well construction rules. The WMDs may also require additional water well construction requirements to protect public health and the ground water resource. As required in rule, a permit cannot be issued to construct a new potable water well on property located within a delineated area if that property is also located within 500 feet of a public water system; connection to a public water system is required in such cases. The following are links to each of the WMD’s Water Well Permitting and Construction Programs, and will open in a new browser window.

All new potable water wells constructed in delineated areas must be cleared for potable use by the DOH or the local CHD. Thus, once a water well is properly constructed and passes inspection, the well water must be tested by the local CHD for contamination. Based on laboratory test results, the CHD will either issue a letter of clearance or denial to use the new well for potable use. If use of a well is denied, the well typically can be remediated to meet drinking water quality standards by installing a granular activated carbon filtration system or other type of filtration system. The local CHDs work closely with the department’s Water Supply Restoration Program  and can provide well owners with assistance with remediation of water wells denied for potable use.

Map Direct is the department’s web-based GIS application, which provides public access to program specific department projects populated with GIS data and imagery. To search and view mapped delineated areas within Map Direct, browse the map gallery and select the pre-packaged Groundwater Delineation GIS map coverage.

Last Modified:
December 7, 2022 - 11:53am

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