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Drilling wells to access groundwater requires a well permit and work must be done by a licensed driller.

Using a licensed driller to construct, decommission or undertake maintenance work on a well helps ensure that South Australia’s groundwater resources are protected.

DEWNR is responsible for:

  • ensuring that only those drillers who meet the required standard are licensed
  • monitoring drillers’ to ensure drilling works continue to meet legislated standards
  • issuing well permits authorising the construction of new wells, and work on existing wells
  • managing the right to take water
  • applying for a permit to drill a well does not guarantee access to water. This is a separate water licensing process and you are encouraged to talk to the department about any proposed well drilling activity and about whether you need a water licence to take the water.

Do you need a well construction permit?

You need a permit for:
  • drilling, plugging, backfilling or sealing of a well 
  • repairing, replacing or altering the casing, lining or screening of a well. 

Conditions of a well construction permit

Once the well permit is issued approving the drilling activity, a licensed driller must be engaged and the driller must have sighted the well permit before carrying out the drilling activities. Drillers must supply DEWNR with a completed drillers well construction report on the approved form within 30 days of completion of the drilling.

Complete the Drillers well construction report.

If your application for a well construction permit is successful, and if a condition of the permit requires you to submit water samples, please send water samples to: Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources, 24-26 Tikalara Street, Regency Park, SA, 5010.

Further information

Contact us

  • Water licensing/Well drillers licence enquiries: (08) 8463 6876
  • Well construction permits: (08) 8735 1134
  • State Drilling Inspector: (08) 8463 6841 or 0428 828 569 
 
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