Groundwater protection zoning is a methodology aimed to keep groundwater as a resource for public demand and protect the source limiting any nearby economic activity that may compromise its quality. Groundwater protection zoning incorporates land-use planning.

Protection zones are particularly effective to control pollution from diffuse sources, while the prevention or control of point sources of pollution may be achieved through rather straight-forward approaches such as permit systems or other legal controls on the quantity, types of substances and places where discharges may take place.