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Indiana Department of Environmental Management

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Table of Contents: Water Quality

Wastewater - Pipelines

What Agencies Regulate Pipelines?

Pipeline facilities (and associated gathering lines) are regulated by the U.S. Department of Transportation, Office of Pipeline Safety, under authority of the Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Act of 1968 and the Hazardous Liquid Pipeline Safety Act of 1979. However, persons constructing and operating pipelines in Indiana also may need permits or approvals from several different agencies including, but not limited to: IDEM, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR).

What types of IDEM permits may be needed for a pipeline?

Air Permitting:

If there is a pumping station or a compressor station, an IDEM air permit may be required.

Neighbor Notification

Indiana Code, Title 13, Article 15, Chapter 8 requires that all applicants seeking environmental permits on property for which an environmental permits has not previously been issued must notify adjoining property owners with 10 working days of submitting a permit application.

Water Permitting:

  • Persons constructing a pipeline must first obtain a storm water construction permit from IDEM (the Rule 5 General Permit as described in the Indiana Administrative Code at
    327 IAC 15-5 (Rule 5) [PDF].
  • If the pipeline must be constructed through a wetland, a 404 wetlands permit may be required from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). If construction requires a Section 404 wetlands permit, or other individual permit from the USACE, a 401 Water Quality Certification from IDEM also will be required.
  • The discharge of water used for any initial or routine hydrostatic testing of the pipeline also will require a NPDES (National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System) permit. IDEM issues a general permit-by-rule (Rule 11) NPDES permit that specifically addresses discharges from hydrostatic testing (as described in 326 IAC 15-11 and on the Permitting Wastewater Discharges Associated with Certain Petroleum-related Activities Permit Guide page).

Other, non-IDEM permits that may be required for a pipeline:

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

As mentioned above, pipeline construction could require a Section 404 wetland permit, or other permits issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). Depending on where within Indiana the pipeline is to be located, the USACE office in Louisville, Chicago, or Detroit will have jurisdiction.

Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR)

If pipeline construction will involve a stream crossing, or construction within a floodway, a permit from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR)  may be required.

Similarly, a permit will be required from IDNR if any anode wells (associated with corrosion protection) are drilled. For questions related to such well drilling activities, call IDNR: (317) 232-0154.

For More Information

Contact IDEM’s OWQ Wastewater Permits Section at (800) 451-6027, ext. 2-8703.