Subsurface injection of liquid waste is used as a disposal method in many parts of the country. It is used particularly when other methods for managing liquid waste are either not possible or too costly. Interest in subsurface injection as a waste-disposal method stems partly from recognition that surface disposal of liquid waste may establish a potential for degrading freshwater resources. Where hydrogeologic conditions are suitable and where surface disposal may cause contamination, subsurface injection is considered an attractive alternative for waste disposal. Decisions to use subsurface injection need to be made with care because, where hydrogeologic conditions are not suitable for injection, the risk to water resources, particularly ground water, could be great. Selection of subsurface injection as a waste-disposal method requires thoughtful deliberation and, in some instances, extensive data collection and analyses.
Subsurface injection is a geological method of waste disposal. Therefore, many State and local governmental officials and environmentally concerned citizens who make decisions about waste-disposal alternatives may know little about it. This report serves as an elemental/guide to subsurface injection and presents subsurface injection practices in Florida as an example of how one State is managing injection.