As part of its work to implement a new Aboveground Storage Tank Regulatory Program, the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) today opened the registration period for tank owners to submit information required for a statewide inventory. Any tanks that are subject to the Aboveground Storage Tank Act (Senate Bill 373) that are not registered with the DEP by Oct. 1 will be out of compliance with state law. The legislation gave the DEP until July 6 to get the registration and inventory process ready but the agency worked to launch registration early so that tank owners would have more time to submit the required information.
The law, drafted in response to a Jan. 9 chemical spill that contaminated the drinking water of approximately 300,000 West Virginia residents, was passed by the Legislature in March and went into effect June 6. It applies to all aboveground storage tanks located in the state that are large enough to hold at least 1,320 gallons of fluid, are in one place for more than 60 days, are 90 percent or more above ground and are not considered “process vessels” as defined by the legislation. One common example of “process vessels,” which are exempt from the program, would be sewage treatment tanks.
Registration information is being collected online through the agency’s Electronic Permitting/Electronic Submission System (ESS) so that data can quickly and easily be stored and accessed.
Companies that already use ESS for permit applications and/or discharge monitoring reporting can use their existing user IDs and passwords. Tank owners who do not already have ESS user IDs and passwords need to visit the DEP’s Aboveground Storage Tank web page for instructions on how to gain access to the system.
The page, www.dep.wv.gov/tanks, also includes a complete explanation of the program requirements and deadlines, a survey to help tank owners determine if they need to register and links to useful information such as frequently asked questions, nationally recognized standards for tanks, and public input received by the agency about the rules for the program.