Temporary Injection

A temporary injection is a short term (3 months or so) injection period approved for a well for the purpose of determining the injection capacity when highly questionable.  It is usually requested prior to constructing the permanent injection lines. Temporary injection is also for emergency situations such as plant shut downs where temporary storage of pipeline fluids is required. The injectivity test is approved by letter, not by a formal AER approval, as is the case for permanent injection wells.  The injectivity test period and maximum injection volumes are usually defined in the disposition letter.

The AER will permit, without application, a maximum cumulative water injection of 500 m3 in order to obtain the required logs and data for Directive 051 and 065 applications. If a total water injection volume is greater than 500 m3, a Directive 065 injectivity test application must be submitted in accordance with section 10.060 of the Oil and Gas Conservation Rules for the approval to inject fluids.

The following outlines the critical information required by the AER and the process to follow in order to obtain a temporary injection test approval. It contains links to relevant application submission procedures and guidance documents.


The Injectivity Test application must be submitted using the Digital Data Submission (DDS) system, available through the Systems & Tools on the AER website, www.aer.ca.

Applications are registered using IAR (Integrated Application Registry), and all material related to an application is stored within this system.

All material related to an application, the applicant acknowledges that all information relating to the application is no longer confidential as of the designation.


All applications are published on the Public Notice of Application (PNoA) page on the AER website (www.aer.ca) to encourage public participation in the approval process.
Application is initially reviewed for administrative completeness upon receipt at the AER. The application may be closed if significantly deficient of Directive 065 requirements. If declared administratively complete, a technical review will be conducted that includes the following (supplemental information may be requested during the technical review period):

  • If the applicant has consent to inject into the target formation(s) for the injectivity test, there is no need to further notify any other parties since the volume of fluid to be injected is small and the injection duration is temporary unless it is determine that the proposed injection volumes and pressures could impact wells not operated by the applicant, thus causing equity and hydraulic isolation concern
  • Application referral to AER Authorizations Subsurface (Geology) may be required for answers to specific questions on the injection formation(s);
  • Identify and evaluate the need for the test such as  factors making successful injection at the proposed well questionable;
  • Determine if the proposed test injection (volume and rates) would be detrimental to ultimate oil recovery;
  • The need to meet Directive 051 requirements will be decided on a case by case scenario, whether under 14 days or not. Nevertheless if the test exceeds 14 days Directive 051 requirements must be met. As a general rule if injection volume significantly exceeds 500 m3, whether over 14 days or not, Directive 051 must be met. Directive 051 data, if required, must be submitted with the application.
  • The maximum wellhead injection pressure (MWHIP) requested, with technical support, must be submitted unless Directive 065 Appendix O Table 1 MWHIP is requested. If the test is only to determine the fracture propagation pressure specify this in the application.
  • If injectant contains H2S ensure an up-to-date AER approved ERP in place.
  • A brief technical memorandum, with a disposition letter are prepared and presented for supervisory review;
  • The Reservoir Engineering Manager, or his delegate(s) make the final decision on the merits of any application and sign off on the approval; 


The processing time for this application is 30 business days and the AER aims to meet this target 95% of the time. This timeline is made up as follows:

Task Business Days
Administrative Completeness 2
Assignment 3
Referral 3
Supplemental Information 15
Technical Review 4
Decision 3