Home Guam EPA Programs Permit Applications and Guidelines Laws, Regulations, Statutory Authority Environmental Education About Guam EPA Search
Quick Reference:
* * *

10 GCA Chapter 46:
Water Resources Conservation Act

[  HTML Version  |  PDF Version  ]

The Water Resources Conservation Act was adopted in its current form in 1985 by Public Law 17-87. It outlines procedures for the conservation of water resources through the establishment of standards and guidelines for the operation of water wells on Guam.

The full text of this law is included on this site for reference purposes only. Any questions about interpretation of these regulations should be directed to appropriate Guam EPA staff.

The text of this law is also available in PDF format (27K). To print this Chapter, it is recommended that you download the PDF file. Viewing and printing PDF files requires the free Adobe® Acrobat® Reader. More about PDF files.

NOTE: This page has been formatted for Netscape Navigator. Users of other browsers may encounter display problems with the text below.

CHAPTER 46 Water Resources Conservation Act

        NOTE: Chapter 46 was amended by P.L. 17-87.

46101. Declaration of Policy.

46102. Definitions.

46103. Well Driller's License.

46104. Well Drilling Permits.

46105. Well Operating Permits.

46106. Completion Report of Well.

46107. Wasteful Use Prohibited.

46108. Right of Inspection.

46109. Meters to Be Installed, Access to Wells.

46110. Sealing of Wells. 

46111. Application of Chapter.

46112. Penalties.

46113. Injunctions.

46114. Fees.

46115. Cooperation With the United States of America.

46116. Water Research and Development Fund.

  46101. Declaration of Policy. It is hereby declared to be the 

policy of the government of Guam, in recognition of its duty to 

conserve and control its water resources for the benefit of the 

inhabitants of Guam, that all of the water resources of Guam are the 

property of the people of Guam, that the general welfare requires that 

said water resources be put to beneficial use to the fullest extent of 

which they are capable, that the waste or unreasonable use or 

unreasonable method of diversion or extraction of water be prevented, 

and that the conservation of such waters is to be exercised with a 

view to the reasonable and beneficial use thereof in the interest of 

the people of Guam and for the public welfare. It is further declared 

that an emergency condition exists with respect to the availability of 

surface and underground water on Guam and that restrictions are 

necessary to prevent over pumping of water, the intrusion of salt 

water, sewage and other contaminants and the resulting permanent 

destruction of the utility of underground water reservoirs and sources 

of potable water supply. The right to water or the use of water from 

any surface or underground supply shall not exceed that which is 

reasonably required to meet the needs of public and private lands of 

Guam, consistent with the purposes for which such lands are or may be 

adaptable, subject only to reasonable laws and regulations as may be 

provided herein or hereinafter to preserve and protect the integrity 

of such underground water supplies. It is therefore further declared 

that the people of Guam have a primary interest in the location, 

construction, maintenance, operation, modification, abandonment and 

destruction of water wells by virtue of the impact of such activities 

on the quality, purity and integrity of underground waters.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46102. Definitions. (a) Person means any individual, firm, 

partnership, association or corporation, both public and private, 

including the agencies of the government of Guam and of the United 

States of America.

        (b) Water shall be construed to include ponds, springs, wells 

and streams and all other bodies of surface or underground water, 

natural or artificial, inland or coastal, fresh or salt, public or 


        (c) Well shall be construed to mean any hole drilled, dug, or 

bored at any angle, either cased or uncased, for the purpose of 

obtaining water or knowledge of water-bearing formations or for the 

disposal of surface water drainage or waste materials. This definition 

shall not include wells used for the purpose of (1) dewatering 

embankments during construction, or (2) stabilizing hillsides or earth 


        (d) Beneficial use of water shall include the use of water 

reasonably required for domestic, agricultural, commercial, 

industrial, recreational and other purposes on both public and private 

lands. The use of water for domestic purposes is defined as the 

highest beneficial use of water.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46103. Well Driller's License. (a) No person shall engage in 

well drilling on Guam without first obtaining a license from the 

Administrator as hereinafter provided. Such licenses are required not 

only of those who make a regular business of well drilling, but all 

who may construct wells for their own purposes or for others as an 

incident to any line of business activity.

        (b) An application for a license shall be made on a form 

prescribed and furnished by the Administrator providing such 

information as the Administrator deems necessary for the purpose of 

the issuance of licenses. The number of the license must be displayed 

on the well-drilling machinery of the licensee. The fee for such 

license shall be based on a schedule (which may be amended from time 

to time) promulgated by the Administrator pursuant to this authority, 

and the license shall be valid for a period of two (2) years. No 

person may be issued such a license who does not satisfy the 

Administrator that he is competent and able to drill wells in Guam.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46104. Well Drilling Permits. (a) No well may be drilled 

unless the owner of the land on which the well is to be drilled shall, 

before the commencement of drilling, have obtained a permit therefor 

and filed a preliminary report with the Administrator.

        (b) The fee for such permit shall be based on a schedule 

(which may be amended from time to time) promulgated by the 


        (c) The preliminary report shall be submitted on forms 

furnished and prescribed by the Administrator and shall contain the 

such information which the Administrator may require.

        (d) As a condition of the permit the Administrator shall 

require the applicant to furnish one or more water samplers for 

subsequent analysis by the Administrator. The cost of such analysis or 

analyses shall be included in the well drilling permit fee.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46105. Well Operating Permits. (a) Within sixty (60) days of 

the initial promulgation of specific regulations relating to well 

operating permits pursuant to 45106, or, in the case of new wells, 

within ninety (90) days from the date of filing of the completed 

report prescribed by 46106, the owner of every well shall obtain an 

operation permit therefor.

        (b) The fee for such a permit shall be based on a schedule 

(which may be amended from time to time) promulgated by the 

Administrator pursuant to this authority, and the permit shall be 

valid for a period of five (5) years.

        (c) Each well operating permit shall state the maximum amount 

of water that may be withdrawn from the well per month, such amount to 

be determined by the Administrator on the basis of the use of the 

water and such other factors as he may deem relevant to the public 

interest in the beneficial utilization and conservation of natural 

water resources.

        (d) The holder of every well operating permit shall file on or 

before January 15, annual reports on forms to be provided by, and 

containing such information as, the Administrator may require 

including, but not limited to, the amount of water extracted each 

month of the preceding twelve (12) month period.

        (e) The concurrence of the Public Utility Agency of Guam shall 

be required before issuance of any well operating permit.

        SOURCE: Subsection (e) was added by P.L. 22-47:6.                Top of the page.

  46106. Completion of Well. (a) Within ninety (90) days after 

the completion or the termination for any reason of the drilling of 

any well whether or not any water is found, a report shall be filed by 

the driller on forms furnished and prescribed by the Administrator, 

indicating mean sea level (MSL) elevation of a permanent benchmark 

placed adjacent to the well, the MSL elevation of the ground surface 

at the well, the log of the well, indicating rock materials 

encountered, their depth below ground surface, location of water 

bearing beds, water levels in each, a description of the casing, and 

screens used pumping tests conducted, the size and depth of the well, 

the capacity of the pump attached or to be attached thereto and such 

other information pertaining to the withdrawal of water and the 

operation of such well as the Administrator may require. The drillers 

shall at the request of the Administrator also furnish samples of the 

materials encountered in the drilling of the well, which shall be 

taken at intervals of five (5) feet, or at every change of formation.

        (b) Information to be provided under this Section shall be 

obtained under the direction of, and shall be certified by a 

professional geologist or engineering geologist possessing a minimum 

of a baccalaureate degree in geology or engineering geology from a 

college or university accredited by the Engineer's Council of 

Professional Development or as approved by the Administrator.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46107. Wasteful Use Prohibited. No owner of a well, whether a 

pumping well or a flowing well, shall discharge from the well or 

permit the discharge from the well of water that is allowed to run to 

waste and not put to beneficial use except in connection with pumping 

tests. All pump tests shall be conducted in accordance with the 

requirements of the Administrator.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46108. Right of Inspection. The Administrator or his 

authorized representative shall have the power at reasonable hours to 

make such inspections of each well and take such samples as may be 

necessary for proper and effective supervision of the construction, 

repair, maintenance, and operation of wells.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46109. Meters to Be Installed, Access to Wells. (a) Prior to 

the issuance of an operating permit, an individual water meter, 

capable of measuring flow rate and total production, shall be 

installed at the well for the purpose of recording the amount of water 

drawn from the wells.

        (b) Water meters shall be maintained in satisfactory operating 

condition. At no time shall a well be operated without a water meter 

for more than a consecutive five (5) day period.

        (c) Each well shall have an opening for measurement of water 

levels in the well. The construction and sealing of the opening shall 

be as prescribed by the Administrator.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46110. Sealing of Wells. For the purpose of preventing the 

contamination of fresh water aquifers the owner of a well, upon 

abandoning a well or encountering highly mineralized water in any 

existing or new well or test hole, shall immediately notify the 

Administrator and shall effectively seal such well or test hole in 

accordance with the requirements prescribed by the Administrator.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46111. Application of Chapter. Except as otherwise provided, 

the provisions of this Chapter shall apply to the construction, 

maintenance, and repair of all new wells constructed after the 

effective date of this Act and to all maintenance, repair and 

enlargement work on old wells, which is of such nature or magnitude as 

to require the use of well-drilling machinery; provided, however, that 

a permit shall not be necessary to clean a well or to pull and repair 

a pump.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46112. Penalties. Any person who violates any of the 

provisions of this Chapter or of the rules and regulations promulgated 

pursuant thereto shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars 

($500.00) or imprisoned for not more than six (6) months, or both. In 

addition, the Administrator shall, regardless of the criminal 

provisions of this Section, have the power to withhold, modify, amend, 

revoke, or suspend any license or permit authorized or issued under 

this Chapter, such power to be exercised only pursuant to the 

provisions of the Administrative Adjudication Law, which law is 

herewith specifically made applicable to this Chapter.

                                                                Top of the page.

  46113. Injunctions. (a) In case of noncompliance with the 

provisions of this Chapter or with the terms and conditions of any 

license or permit issued hereunder, the Administrator in addition to 

or in lieu of proceeding under 46112 may notify the Attorney General 

of such noncompliance. The Attorney General, upon receipt of such 

notification, may institute an appropriate action or proceeding at law 

or in equity to restrain, correct, or remove such noncompliance.

        (b) For all cases of noncompliance referred to the Attorney 

General by the Administrator, quarterly reports shall be prepared by 

the Attorney General and submitted to the Administrator summarizing 

the status of actions taken to restrain, correct, or remove such 


                                                                Top of the page.

  46114. Fees. (a) All fees and monetary charges under this 

Chapter and 12015.3 of Title 12, Guam Code Annotated, shall be 

deposited in the Water Research and Development Fund.

        SOURCE: Amended by P.L. 22-47:5.                 Top of the page.

  46115. Cooperation With United States of America. The 

Governor of Guam and the Administrator are hereby authorized and 

directed to enter into agreements with agencies of the United States 

of America, including, but not limited to, the Departments of the Navy 

and Air Force of the Department of Defense, the Office of Territorial 

Affairs and the Geological Survey of the Department of the Interior, 

the Environmental Protection Agency, for the purposes of implementing 

the provisions of this Chapter. Said agreements shall be structured in 

such a manner as to facilitate the rapid exchange of information and 

advice between the various federal and territorial agencies having a 

vital interest in the preservation and protection of Guam's 

groundwater resources. The Administrator is further authorized and 

directed to appoint a Technical Advisory Committee comprising 

representatives of the foregoing agencies and from the Guam 

Environmental Protection Agency, the Public Utility Agency of Guam, 

the University of Guam, the Bureau of Planning, and such other 

representatives as he may desire to provide advice to the 

Administrator concerning the monitoring of the groundwater management 

program as may be indicated by the annual reports to be prepared 

thereon by the Administrator. The Technical Advisory Committee shall 

meet at least semi-annually and a record of its proceedings shall be 

maintained by the Administrator and promulgated to the members of the 

committee. Members of the committee shall serve at the pleasure of the 

appropriate officer of their parent organization."

                                                                Top of the page.

  46116. Water Research and Development Fund. There is hereby 

created within the government of Guam a special fund, to be known as 

the "Water Research and Development Fund" (the "Fund"). The Fund shall 

be available to fund the conduct of water resource research which will 

contribute (i) to the effective planning and management of Guam's 

underground and surface water, and (ii) to the development of programs 

which promote the best use of these resources. No monies may be 

withdrawn from the Fund except upon specific statutory appropriation 

by the Legislature. The Fund shall be administered by a committee, to 

be known as the Water Research and Development Fund Committee, 

comprised of four (4) members, including a representative of the 

University of Guam Water & Energy Research Institute, the Guam 

Environmental Protection Agency ("GEPA"), the Public Utility Agency of 

Guam ("PUAG"), and a business representative who shall be appointed by 

the Governor. The Chairman of the Water Research and Development Fund 

Committee shall be elected by its members who shall meet at a minimum, 

quarterly, to execute the provisions of this 46116. The procurement 

of services and resources by the Water Research and Development Fund 

Committee shall be subject to the procurement procedures set out in 

Chapter 5, Title 5, Guam Code Annotated. The Water Research and 

Development Fund Committee shall report to the Legislature, annually, 

as to the status of the Fund.

        SOURCE: Added by P.L. 22-47:3.                   Top of the page.


[   Home   |   Programs   |   Permits   |   Regulations   |   Education   |   About GEPA   |   Search   ]

URL: https://guamepa.govguam.net/regs/chapter46.html
Last update: 21 December 2000

Comments? E-mail the .