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USTs 101. Carin Lee Kromm, L.G North Carolina Department of Natural Resources, Division of Waste Management, UST Section. Curriculum Vitae. 1982-1986: University of Delaware, B.S. Geology; Newark Delaware 1987-1989: Asbestos Laboratory Technician, Hauppauge New York

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Usts 101

USTs 101

Carin Lee Kromm, L.G

North Carolina Department of Natural Resources, Division of Waste Management, UST Section

Curriculum vitae
Curriculum Vitae

  • 1982-1986: University of Delaware, B.S. Geology; Newark Delaware

  • 1987-1989: Asbestos Laboratory Technician, Hauppauge New York

  • 1989-1990: Field Geologist, Cape Coral, Florida

  • 1990-1995: Staff Geologist-Project Geologist, Bethesda Maryland

  • 1995-2011: Project, Senior, and Principal Geologist, Greensboro and Winston-Salem, North Carolina

  • 2011-UST: Section Supervisor, Winston-Salem, NC

The clean water act of 1972

The Clean Water Act of 1972

Where did it all begin??

  • EPA was established on December 2, 1970

  • The Federal Water Pollution Act was amended six more times before it was finally rewritten in 1972 and amended in 1977 and is now known as the Clean Water Act (CWA)

  • Since 1977, the CWA has been amended several more times.

  • Federal ust regulations
    Federal UST Regulations

    Congress passed several laws to address the nationwide problem of leaking USTs.

    • 1978 Oil Pollution and Hazardous Substance Act

    • 1984 Subtitle I was added to the Solid Waste Disposal Act and Solid Waste Amendments

    • 1986 Superfund Amendments Reauthorization Act (SARA)

    • EPA directed the States to implement similar programs

    North carolina department of environment and natural resources

    North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources

    Division of Waste Management

    Ust section
    UST Section Resources

    • Corrective Action Branch (CAB) – Addresses petroleum Releases

    • Permits and Inspections Branch(PIB) – Addresses current and operating UST systems

    • Trust Fund Branch (TFB) – Establishes eligibility and reimburses the Responsible Party cost to cleanup releases from UST Systems

    North carolina regulations pertaining to the ust section
    North Carolina Regulations Pertaining to the UST Section Resources

    North Carolina Administrative Code (NCAC)

    Title 15A, Environment and Natural Resources

    Chapter 2, Environmental Management\Title%2015A%20-%20Environment%20and%20Natural%20Resources\Chapter%2002%20-%20Environmental%20Management

    • February 1976 Subchapter 2B -Surface Water and Wetland Standards

    • February 1976 Subchapter 2C - Well Construction Standards

    • June 1979 Subchapter 2L - Groundwater Classification and Standards

    North carolina regulations pertaining to the ust section continued
    North Carolina Regulations Pertaining to the UST Section (Continued)

    • January 1991 Subchapter 2N

      Underground Storage Tanks

    • July 1992 Subchapter 2O

      Financial Responsibility for

      Owner/Operators of USTs

    • February 1993 Subchapter 2P – Leaking Underground Storage Tank Cleanup Funds

    Ust section is responsible for
    UST SECTION is responsible for: (Continued)

    • All Releases Pertaining to Petroleum Products from the following sources:

      • Aboveground Tanks (ASTs);

      • USTs;

      • Oil/Water Separators;

      • Generators;

      • Hydraulic lifts

      • Overturned Vehicles –Cars, Tankers and Semis; and

      • Spills.

    What is a spill or release
    What is a Spill or Release (Continued)?

    Definition (for UST releases)

    Definition (non-UST spills)

    • Any spilling, leaking, emitting, discharging, escaping, leaching or disposing from a UST system into groundwater, surface water or subsurface soil.

    • Reportable Release: Any quantity!

    • Any spilling leaking, emitting, discharging, escaping, leaching or disposing into groundwater, surface water, or soil (above or below ground).

    • Reportable Release: Equal to or greater than 25 gallons.

    How are releases from home heating oil usts discovered
    How are Releases from Home Heating Oil USTs Discovered? (Continued)

    • Property Transfers

      • Phase I Environmental Site Assessments (usually not required by lender for a residential home)

      • Home Inspection (visual observation)

      • Homeowner Disclosure (home is heated by fuel oil)

    • Soil sampling in the vicinity of UST.

    • Removal of UST

    • Contaminated water- supply well

    • Contaminated surface water body or low area where water pools after a rain event.

    • Odors/Vapors in basement or crawlspace.

    Home heating oil usts are unregulated until a release is discovered then it becomes regulated

    Home Heating Oil USTs (Continued)

    Are UNREGULATEDUntil A Release IS Discovered, then it becomes REGULATED.

    What does that mean
    What does that mean? (Continued)

    Regulated USTs Vs Non-Regulated USTs

    Regulated USTs are defined as:

    Any underground storage tank containing regulated substances as defined in 15A NCAC 2N), specifically petroleum and are subject to the UST Closure, Assessment and Cleanup Rules.

    (Including but not limited to gasoline, diesel, and used/waste oil)

    Non-Regulated USTs are defined as:

    Heating oil USTs that are used on the premises where stored a

    Farm or residential heating oil USTs less than 1,100 gallons in capacity and used for non-commercial reasons.

    USTs less than 110 gallons in capacity.

    Any heating oil UST greater than 1,100 gallons used on premises where stored by four or fewer households

    If a release is not suspected
    If a Release is Not Suspected (Continued)

    • USTs are not required to be removed from the ground or closed by any specific procedure.

    • Soil and groundwater samples are not required at closure.

    If a release is suspected
    If a Release is Suspected (Continued)

    • The UST must be repaired or removed, and soil and groundwater must be assessed.

    Soil contamination
    Soil Contamination (Continued)

    • Fuel oil can migrate via the pathways of least resistance such as pipelines, more porous soil, and natural cracks and fissures.

    Now what
    Now What? (Continued)

    • Initial Abatement Actions must be performed by the Responsible Party (RP)

      • Who is the RP? Good Question!

        The RP is defined as a UST owner, UST operator, and/or landowner seeking reimbursement from the NC State Trust Fund, or any person who is responsible for a discharge or release of petroleum

    Initial abatement actions
    Initial Abatement Actions of Discovery

    • Hire a Licensed Geologist or Professional Engineer (work must be overseen and reports must be sealed by licensed professional).

    • Remove Contaminated Soil

    • Collect Confirmation Soil Samples

    • Investigate the Presence of Free Product

    • Abate Free Product, if present

    • Provide Notification to NCDENR

    • Submit an Initial Abatement Action Report to NCDENR

    Regulated ust rules
    Regulated UST Rules of Discovery

    “Risk-Based Rules”

    • Receptors such as water supply wells, places of public assembly, day cares, schools, land use, surface water bodies, wellhead protection areas, deep aquifers in the Coastal Plain .

    • Land Use (current and future) such as Residential, Commercial, Industrial. NCDENR assumes Residential Land Use until proven otherwise.

    • Petroleum constituents detected in soil and groundwater are allowed to be left at different concentrations based on the results of the receptor survey (Risk Classification-High, Intermediate, Low).

    Incident risk classification
    Incident Risk Classification of Discovery

    High Risk Classification:

    • Water Supply Well, including those used for non-drinking purposes is contaminated by the release

    • A water supply well used for drinking is located within 1,000 feet of the source area.

    • A water supply well no used for drinking is located within 250 feet of the source area

    • Contaminated groundwater within 500 feet of the source area is has a potential for use in the future and there is no other source of water.

    • The vapors from the release pose a serious threat of explosion due to the accumulation of vapors in a confined space.

    • The release poses an imminent danger to public health, public safety or the environment.

    Incident risk classification1
    Incident Risk Classification of Discovery

    Intermediate Risk Classification:

    • The High Risk Classification Criteria does not apply

    • Surface water body is located within 500 feet of the source area.

    • Free product is present on groundwater.

    • Groundwater concentrations are greater than the Gross Contaminant Levels (GCLs)

      Low Risk Classification:

    • Does not meet any criteria defined as High or Intermediate Risk

    Risk based standards
    Risk-Based Standards of Discovery

    Soil Standards:

    • Soil-to-Groundwater Maximum Soil Contaminant Concentrations (MSCCs)-Most protective of groundwater quality.

    • Residential MSCCs –Most protective of the sensitive human and environmental population.

    • Industrial/Commercial MSCCs-Most protective of the occasional visitor and worker populations.

    Groundwater Standards:

    • 2L Groundwater Quality Standards-The lowest standards. Some are lower than EPA drinking water standards.

    • Gross Contaminant Levels - Approximately 1,000 times the 2L Groundwater Quality Standard.

    Risk based remediation goals
    Risk-Based Remediation Goals of Discovery

    • High Risk Remediation Goals:

      • Soil must be cleaned up to below the Soil-to-Groundwater MSCCs*.

      • Groundwater must be cleaned up to below the 2L Groundwater Quality Standards.

        * Polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are most harmful to the sensitive human population so that the Residential MSCCs for these concentrations are lower than the Soil-to-Groundwater MSCCs and would apply for closure.

    • Intermediate and Low Risk Remediation Goals:

      • Soil must be cleaned up to below the Residential MSCCs, if site is zoned as residential property* .

      • Soil must be cleaned to below the Industrial/Commercial MSCCs if the site is zoned as Industrial/ Commercial property *.

      • Groundwater must be cleaned up to below the GCLs or will not cause the 2B Surface Water Quality Standards to be exceeded by a factor of 10 by the time it reaches the surface water body.

        * The rules change appropriately if rezoned in the future. NCDENR assumes that all sites are Residential until proven otherwise.

    Risk reduction and closure
    Risk Reduction and Closure of Discovery

    High Risk Classification:

    • Reduce the risk by permanently closing water supply wells; and

    • Provide municipal water to residents, if available.

    Intermediate Risk Classification:

    • Complete enough remediation to remove free product from the groundwater surface.

    • Complete enough remediation to reduce petroleum concentrations in groundwater to below the GCLs.

    • Complete enough soil remediation to reduce soil concentrations to below the Residential MSCCs or Industrial/Commercial MSCCs, if applicable.

    Land use restrictions
    Land Use Restrictions of Discovery

    • A Notice of Residual Petroleum (NORP/NRP) must be filed with the appropriate County Register of Deeds for those sites that have not been remediated to below the “Unrestricted Use Standards” prior to a land transaction and issuance of a Notice of No Further Action.

    • Unrestricted Use Standards are considered to be the Soil-to-Groundwater/Residential MSCCs and the 2L Groundwater Quality Standards.

    Nfa with a norp
    NFA with a NORP of Discovery

    High Risk Sites:

    • No NORP unless the risk has been reduced to Intermediate or Low.

      Intermediate and Low Risk Sites:

    • NORP where the Residential MSCCs and the 2L Groundwater Quality Standards are exceeded.

      Public Notice is required when a NORP is used as a vehicle to closure.

    Lust trust fund
    LUST Trust Fund of Discovery

    • Home Heating Oil USTs are considered to be Non-Commercial USTs and eligible for the Non-Commercial Trust Fund.

    • Subject to Eligibility Verification by the Trust Fund Branch of the UST Section. (Statutory Tank Owner is determined by the date of last use-Last used after November 8, 1984)

    • No Deductible

    • Only cleanup costs for “directed work” are reimbursable (no reimbursement for pre-closure assessment and UST closure costs)

    • Only sites that are ranked as H350 are considered to be directed. Hasn’t changed since October 9, 2006. Ensures the funds solvency.

    Some unregulated usts surface spills and ast rules
    Some Unregulated USTs, Surface Spills, and AST Rules of Discovery

    No Risk-Based Rules!

    Non ust rules
    Non-UST Rules of Discovery

    • Regulated under the Oil Pollution and Hazardous Substance Act of 1978 and the 15A NCAC 2L, Groundwater Classifications.

    • Like home heating oil USTs, ASTs are considered to be unregulated and no closure procedures are required.

    • However, if a release is indentified soil and groundwater assessment is required to be completed.

    • Soil contamination must be cleaned up to Soil-to-Groundwater MSCCs

    • Groundwater contamination must be cleaned up to the 2L Groundwater Standards.

    • Risk-Based rules may be coming.

    Where does the funding for this program come from
    Where does the funding for this program come from? of Discovery

    • Issue permits to operating facilities, collect annual permit fees

    • Trust Fund (Operators pay permit fees) pays program salaries and also aids RPs with cleanup costs.

    • Gas Tax (1/32 of a penny)

    • EPA Funding Grants

    Money doesn’t grow trees, right?


    Questions? of Discovery