Tag Archives: New UST Regulations

The New UST Regulations have been Published

Picture of Melanie Nelson holding the new UST regs published in the Federal Register July 15 2015

The Implementation Timeline is now Ticking for the new Underground Storage Tank Regulations

The EPA’s Revisions to 40 CFR Parts 280 and 281 have been published in the Federal Register today – July 15, 2015

The Final Rule – Revising Underground Storage Tank Regulations—Revisions to Existing Requirements and New Requirements for Secondary Containment and Operator Training – was Published today in the Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 135.

This rule is effective October 13, 2015.

Wondering how this may affect you, your company or your regulating authority? That depends on where in the country you are located. Owners and operators in states that already has state program approval (SPA), will keep operating under their current regulations for now – those states have three years to reapply in order to retain their SPA status. Owners and operators in the 16 non-SPA states and territories must meet the federal requirements – the implementation schedule in the 2015 UST regulations (and of course follow their state requirements). Here is a breakdown of the implementation times:

Required Immediately

  • Elimination of ball floats/flow restrictors in vent lines as standalone overfill prevention
  • Close tanks using internal lining as the sole method of corrosion protection when the lining fails
  • 30 day Notification of UST Ownership Change
  • Proof of compatibility of UST and product when storing >10% ethanol or >20% biodiesel
  • Testing 30 Days after Repairs to spill or overfill equipment and secondary containment areas

Required in 180 days

  • Secondary Containment

Required in three years

  • Operator Training
  • 30-Day Walkthrough Inspections
  • Annual Inspections of Containment Sumps and Hand Held Release Detection equipment
  • Spill Prevention Testing
  • Overfill Prevention Equipment Inspection
  • Containment Sumps used for Piping interstitial monitoring
  • Emergency Generators require release detection
  • State programs have to be re-approved

Here is the Summary, and you can find additional information in the blog links below.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA or the Agency) is making certain revisions to the 1988 underground storage tank (UST) regulation and to the 1988 state program approval (SPA) regulation. These changes establish Federal requirements that are similar to key portions of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct); they also update the 1988 UST and SPA regulations. Changes to the regulations include: Adding secondary containment requirements for new and replaced tanks and piping; adding operator training requirements; adding periodic operation and  maintenance requirements for UST systems; addressing UST systems deferred in the 1988 UST regulation; adding new release prevention and detection technologies; updating codes of practice; making editorial corrections and technical amendments; and updating state program approval requirements to incorporate these new changes. EPA thinks these changes will protect human health and the environment by reducing the number of releases to the environment and quickly detecting releases, if they occur.

Contact us with questions you have about the new regulations and how they’ll affect you/your company. We have over 50 years experience with fueling systems – USTs, ASTs and piping and have a good understanding of how the regulations will be implemented and what that means to the UST owner/operators.

Previous TAIT Blogs about the New Regs

Comparing EPA’s 2015 Revised UST Regulations Documents

Where do you start?

Want to know where to start when reviewing the 2015 Revised Underground Storage Tank Regulations Documents? I’ve been pouring through the documents shared on EPA’s website created just for the revisions of the UST regulations and here are some quick descriptions that I hope you’ll find helpful.

Comparison Chart of the 2015 Revised UST Regulations versus the 1988 UST Regulations This is a 10 page PDF Spreadsheet showing the highlights of the changes

Prepublication version of the final UST regulations This is the full 468 page document that explains the rationale behind the changes that were made to the regulations and includes the new regulations. The first half is an explanation that helps the reader to understand what the EPA considered, such as suggestions from commenters, during the discussion and decision making and the rationale for the decisions that were made. Here are the page numbers to go with the Table of Contents. That should help you navigate this big document 🙂

Red Line Strikeout of 40 CFR part 280 and 40 CFR part 281 This is 141 pages but is very helpful if you are used to looking up information in the regs already. This shows the differences between the regulations we are currently using/looking at, and the changes that have been made to the regulations.

MUSTs for USTs If you are new to owning or operating underground storage tanks, start here. TAIT recommends all Owners and Operators download and read the updated MUSTs for USTs. It’s an instruction manual that provides a nice straightforward explanation of requirements when owning and working with underground storage tanks. It’s 40 pages.

Regulatory impact analysis 167 pages, Potential costs, benefits and other impacts of the updated regs. They’re referred to in the Prepublication Version of the Regs as well. This may be good for giving an explanation of what we might expect to see overall, like the number of facilities affected.

Response to comments document 181 pages, if you commented on the regs and want to see the responses given, this is where you would look. Comments are also referred to in the Prepublication version of the final regs.

I hope this serves as a nice reference for you, and this should make finding what you are looking for even easier 🙂 For a more details, see the announcement blog 2015 Revised Underground Storage Tank Regulations.
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Here are more related blogs:

New UST Regs for Protection from Groundwater Contamination

EPA’s updated underground storage tanks (UST) regulations are final and will be published soon in the Federal Register

The U.S. EPA has strengthened the Underground Storage Tank (UST) requirements to protect us from groundwater contamination with better prevention and detection of leaks from UST systems. The UST program changes, revisions to the 1988 federal underground storage tank (UST) regulations, strengthen UST prevention and detection practices, increase emphasis on properly operating and maintaining UST equipment, and ensure parity in implementing the national UST program. This is the first major revision to the federal UST regulations since 1988.

Check out the Comparison Chart overview of the 468 page document– it points out major changes to the 1988 UST regulations with the new 2015 UST regulations. You can see the actual differences in a redline strikeout version showing the final 2015 regulations imbedded into the existing regulations. I’ve found both of these documents very helpful. The 10-page chart is a great quick review and the strikeout is a good resource.

EPA created a specific website for the Revised UST Regulations so you can access links to a pre-publication version of the signed regulations, regulatory impact analysis, and response to comments document as well as the comparison and additional resources. Once published, a link to the Federal Register version of the regulations will also be listed there.

I really liked that Carolyn Hoskinson, the head of EPA’s UST program shared

At all times we based our decisions on these strong values:

  • balance important environmental protection with the reasonableness of the cost and complexity to our regulated community
  • focus on the highest priority areas that appear to continue to lead to ongoing releases from UST systems
  • allow flexibility whenever possible
  • rely on industry standards whenever possible
  • consider the implementation of these requirements and strive to make the requirements as straightforward as possible by things like aligning due dates and writing in plain, easy-to-understand language

While these changes may be difficult and expensive for people/companies, I understand that the underlying purpose is to protect us from groundwater contamination and appreciate the values Carolyn pointed out they operated under as they considered their revisions. The EPA granted a 3 year grace period for many of the significant changes. If you have any questions about your UST compliance, please ask. We’re here to help.

Melanie

View from one of TAIT's projects in Alaska

View from one of TAIT’s projects in Alaska