Industry-mounted campaign results in compliance deadline extensions

Aug. 1, 2004
AS WAS expected the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has given a 12-month extension to upcoming compliance dates for certain Spill Prevention Control

AS WAS expected the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has given a 12-month extension to upcoming compliance dates for certain Spill Prevention Control and Countermeasure (SPCC) amendments.

The rule, 40 CFR Part 112, application includes storage and terminaling facilities and was discussed at the Independent Liquid Terminals Association Conference by Eric Politte of Response Management Associates Inc, Houston, Texas, and Nissan Cohen, Ionics Instrument Business Group, Boulder, Colorado.

Politte said the industry had mounted an intensive campaign to persuade EPA to extend the deadlines in order for those falling under the regulation to meet the mandates.

Compliance for most facilities initially was extended to August 17, 2004, and full implementation would have been required by February 18, 2005. In addition, facilities that become operational after February 18, 2005 must prepare and implement an SPCC plan before commencement of operations.

Plan approval

All plans and corrective actions will have to be approved by EPA, Cohen said. As part of the requirements, facilities also must have professional engineers certify plans.

He pointed out that the regulations stem from the Clean Water Act and apply to tank farms, pipelines, terminals, and refineries, and even some truck wash racks. He also added that failure to meet the requirements will result in fines that can be negotiated, “but they are always collected.”

More information

More information about the regulation can be found at The Federal Register Web site. Go to the Internet at, scroll to the bottom of the page, and under “executive resources” click on the “Federal Register” button. The rule is under the July 17, 2002, entries. Information about the extension can be found in similar fashion.

Here are some of the requirements that will impact storage facilities.

  • Cathodic protective wrap and integrity/leak testing is required on new or replaced buried piping.

  • Portable tanks and containers now require containment with allowance for precipitation.

  • Written tank integrity testing program in accordance with industry standards must be available for review and referenced in the SPCC Plan.

  • Drums must be stored in a manner allowing dimensional visual inspections in order to avoid applicability of this requirement. If drums are not stored in an approved manner, a testing program is needed.

  • Test on a regular schedule and when materially repaired.

  • Must combine visual inspection with another testing technique (i.e.: hydrostatic, radiographic, ultrasonic, acoustic emissions, or other non-destructive shell testing)

  • Include supports and foundations.

  • Certifying engineer must consider applicable industry standards.

  • Keep comparison records.

  • Frequently inspect exterior for deterioration, discharges.

  • Must at least provide spill containment for the capacity of the largest single tank with sufficient freeboard for precipitation. Sufficient freeboard is the capacity needed to contain precipitation from a 25-year, 24-hour storm event.