Petrogram -Summer 2012 - (Page 19)
Been There, Done That
By Bob Fingar, Guilday, Tucker, Schwartz & Simpson, P.A.
ate in 2011, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed significant changes to its petroleum underground storage tank rules. Chief among the new requirements would be secondary containment for new and replaced USTs, monthly inspection of release detection and spill containment, annual testing of spill protection devices, and testing of overfill equipment and secondary containment every three years. The proposed requirements, should they become ﬁnal, would obviously have enormous impact nationwide where single walled systems, if corrosion resistant, have been the norm. Florida, of course, has adopted a secondary containment standard, which by now has been fully implemented. Not only did Florida require secondary containment for new installations, it had an upgrading requirement (which the new EPA rules would not include). Furthermore, Florida imposed release detection and monthly inspection requirements far in advance of these federal proposals. So the question must be asked, if the EPA rules become effective, what will be the impact in Florida? The federal rules include an operator training requirement that must be implemented in Florida given that DEP continues to accept certain federal funds. The different categories of training relate to employees who manage, maintain or are responsible for day-to-day oversight of USTs. For more on operator training, go to FPMA’s website at www.fpma.org/education.cfm. There are also a number of areas in which the federal requirements are somewhat different or more speciﬁc than the Florida rules. While we are used to a monthly inspection process, the federal procedure may require somewhat more intensive inspections or, at least, recordkeeping of the inspections. Testing of equipment may be different, especially with
respect to spill prevention devices which have to be tested annually. Also, spill and overﬁll protection equipment would have to be tested after repairs, presumably even if the repairs did not relate to the integrity of the equipment. A few of the other areas of uncertainty include: • The need to clarify the rule to allow for use of sensors to monitor interstitial spaces in secondary containment equipment. (The rule only states vacuum, liquid or pressure.) • The need to clarify that water in a sump or an “alarm” in release detection is an “incident,” not a “discharge.” • Compatibility issues above 10 percent ethanol or 20 percent biodiesel. The Petroleum Marketers Association of America (PMAA) held a working group meeting in Baltimore to discuss the proposed rules. FPMA’s interest was to clarify the federal rules so that the rules recognized and accepted Florida’s rule requirements. PMAA, however, given its representation of states that have not adopted secondary containment requirements (and other
requirements such as dispenser liners), has raised broader objections to the proposed rules. As this article went to print, PMAA requested that EPA withdraw the proposed rule, in large part because EPA had allegedly failed to adequately assess the ﬁnancial impact on UST owners and operators. We will continue to provide updates on the federal rule and any potential impacts in Florida. ❍ Robert D. Fingar is a shareholder with Guilday, Tucker, Schwartz and Simpson, P.A. He has spent most of his 26-year legal career practicing in the areas of administrative and environmental law, particularly underground storage tank regulations. You can reach Bob on the Petroleum Hotline® at 800-226-7091 or email@example.com.
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19 Summer 2012 | 9:38:04 AM 6/9/11
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Petrogram -Summer 2012
Executive Director’s Perspective
2012 Sunshine Food & Fuel Expo Highlights
Win a Seven-Night Cruise for Two Aboard Royal Caribbean
Been There, Done That
Index of Advertisers/Advertiser.com
Petrogram -Summer 2012
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