40.410.010    Introduction

A.    Purpose.

    This chapter is intended to protect public health, safety, and welfare by preventing degradation, and where possible, enhance the quality and quantity of groundwater which will be, or might likely be, used in the future for drinking water or business purposes. This will be accomplished by limiting potential contaminants within designated critical aquifer recharge areas (CARAs). The requirements of this chapter are intended to fulfill obligations of state law under the Growth Management Act, Chapter 36.70A RCW; the Public Water Systems Penalties and Compliance, Chapter 70.119A RCW; the Washington State Wellhead Protection Program and the Public Water Supplies, Chapter 246-290 WAC; the Dangerous Waste Regulations, Chapter 173-303 WAC; the Water Quality Standards for Groundwater of the State of Washington, Chapter 173-200 WAC; the Underground Injection Control Program, Chapter 173-218 WAC; and the Regulation of Public Ground Waters, Chapter 90.48 RCW.

(Amended: Ord. 2005-04-15; Ord. 2018-01-03; Ord. 2020-03-01)

B.    Applicability and Exemptions.

1.    Applicability. This chapter applies to all critical aquifer recharge areas as defined in Section 40.410.010(C). Parcels that are partly within Category I and Category II shall be subject to the Category I provisions in this chapter. Parcels that are partly inside Category II, but outside Category I, shall be subject to the Category II provisions in this chapter. Where pre-applications are required for projects, applicants are encouraged to use the pre-application process for pre-screening CARA exemptions.

2.    Exempt Activities and Uses. The following activities and uses do not require a CARA permit:

a.    Existing activities that currently and legally existed on July 31, 1997;

b.    All residential uses other than those having activities covered by Section 40.410.020(A);

c.    Group A public water system source development and associated infrastructure;

d.    Public water supply aquifer storage and recovery (ASR) facilities;

e.    Public water pipelines;

f.    Public water supply storage structures;

g.    Other uses not listed in Sections 40.410.020(A), (B) or (C);

h.    Activities already permitted and regulated by the state or the Clark County Health Department to incorporate best management practices; and

i.    Any uses where containment is provided and approved by the Clark County Building and Fire Departments.

3.    The following underground storage tank (UST) systems and facilities, including any piping connected thereto, are exempt from the requirements of this chapter:

a.    Any UST system holding hazardous wastes subject to Subtitle C of the Federal Solid Waste Disposal Act, or a mixture of such hazardous waste and other regulated substances;

b.    Any wastewater treatment tank system that is part of a wastewater treatment facility regulated under Section 402 or 307(b) of the Clean Water Act;

c.    Equipment or machinery that contains regulated substances for operational purposes such as hydraulic lift tanks and electrical equipment tanks;

d.    Any UST system whose capacity is one hundred ten (110) gallons or less;

e.    Any UST system that contains a de minimis concentration of regulated substances;

f.    Any emergency spill or overflow containment UST system that is expeditiously emptied after use;

g.    Farm or residential UST systems of one thousand one hundred (1,100) gallons or less capacity used for storing motor fuel for noncommercial purposes (i.e., not for resale);

h.    UST systems used for storing heating oil for consumptive use on the premises where stored; except that such systems which store in excess of one thousand one hundred (1,100) gallons are subject to the release reporting requirements of WAC 173-360-372;

i.    Septic tanks;

j.    Any pipeline facility (including gathering lines) regulated under:

(1)    The Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Act of 1968 (49 U.S.C. App. 1671, et seq.); or

(2)    The Hazardous Liquid Pipeline Safety Act of 1979 (49 U.S.C. App. 2001, et seq.); or

(3)    Which is a pipeline facility regulated under state laws comparable to the provisions of the law referred to in Section 40.410.010(B)(3)(j)(1) or (2) of this definition;

k.    Surface impoundments, pits, ponds, or lagoons;

l.    Stormwater or wastewater collection systems;

m.    Class V injection wells for stormwater infiltration meeting current stormwater code requirements, subject to Clark County review and approval;

n.    Flow-through process tanks;

o.    Liquid traps or associated gathering lines directly related to oil or gas production and gathering operations; or

p.    Storage tanks situated in an underground area (such as a basement, cellar, vault, mineworking drift, shaft, or tunnel) if the storage tank is situated upon or above the surface of the floor.

(Amended: Ord. 2005-04-15; Ord. 2018-01-03; Ord. 2020-03-01)

C.    Definitions.

    For the purposes of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply:

Category I CARA

“Category I CARA” means the highest priority critical aquifer recharge area, represented by the one (1) year time-of-travel for Group A water wells.

Category II CARA

“Category II CARA: means the primary critical aquifer recharge area, represented by the ten (10) year time-of-travel for Group A water wells. This area also consists of the unconsolidated sedimentary aquifer and the Troutdale gravel aquifer.

(Amended: Ord. 2005-04-15; Ord. 2018-01-03; Ord. 2020-03-01)

D.    Map.

    The map entitled Clark County, Washington Critical Aquifer Recharge Areas is adopted in the twenty (20) year Clark County Comprehensive Growth Management Plan as best available science. If a conflict exists between the map and on-site conditions, the on-site conditions shall supersede the map. The county will update the CARA map as warranted by new information. GIS Map Store produces maps for free in the following link: Critical Areas Ordinances Maps (https://gis.clark.wa.gov/gishome/mapstore/#/mapProducts).

(Amended: Ord. 2005-04-15; Ord. 2009-03-02; Ord. 2018-01-03; Ord. 2020-03-01)