Public Comment period on proposed changes to R311, Petroleum Storage Tank Rules (3/1/2023 – 3/31/2023)

The Division of Environmental Response and Remediation (DERR) is proposing changes to R311, the Petroleum Storage Tank (PST) rules.

On July 14, 2022, the Waste Management and Radiation Control Board adopted changes to the Underground Storage Tank rules to address rulemaking requirements for Aboveground Petroleum Storage Tanks (APST) that were mandated by the passage of Senate Bill SB-40, Storage Tanks Amendments, in the 2021 legislative session. As the Division of Environmental Response and Remediation (DERR) has begun implementing the requirements of SB-40 and the recent changes to R311, the need for a few additional changes to R311 has become apparent. These proposed changes address the following issues:

  1. The definition of an APST.  As AST owner/operators began notifying the DERR of their above ground storage tanks it became apparent that there were several types of ASTs that meet the statutory definition of an APST but, in the Division’s opinion, were not tanks the legislature intended to regulate.  The changes to the APST definition exclude these ASTs from the regulation.
  2. Setting the dollar amount of the financial responsibility (FR) requirement.  The rule change completed in July 2022 allowed APSTs to utilize any of the underground storage tank FR mechanisms identified in 40 CFR 280 to meet the FR requirement established by SB-40, but failed to clearly establish the dollar amount of FR required.  This change sets Utah’s FR requirement for APSTs to the amount required by the federal UST regulation under 40 CFR 280 Subpart H. 
  3. Establish requirements and processes for APST release reporting, investigation, confirmation, response, and corrective action.   This change establishes the same requirements and processes for APSTs as that required for federally regulated USTs under 40 CFR 280 Subparts E and F. 

Because SB-40 requires all APSTs to meet financial responsibility requirements and obtain a certificate of compliance by July 1, 2023, addressing these issues requires immediate attention so the updated rule will be in place before the July 1 deadline.

Amended Rules

  • R311-200 Petroleum Storage Tanks: Definitions.
  • R311-202 Federal Underground Storage Tank Regulations.
  • R311-206 Petroleum Storage Tanks: Certificate of Compliance and Financial Assurance Mechanisms.

A summary of the proposed changes appears below and the text of the changes can be found here. In the rule text document, wording to be added is underlined, and wording to be removed is struck out.

Summary of the Proposed Changes

R311-200 Underground Storage Tanks: Definitions

  • R311-200-1(2)(a)(iii)(A).  Removed some language from the statute definition of an APST that is not applicable in the rule language.
  • R311-200-1(2)(a)(iii)(D). Clarified this exclusion to include oil and gas transmission operations.  
  • R311-200-1(2)(a)(iii)(F). Added exclusion for oil filled electrical equipment such as transformers.
  • R311-200-1(2)(a)(iii)(G).  Added exclusion for ASTs that are used at a site on a temporary basis.
  • R311-200-1(2)(a)(iii)(H).  Added exclusion for used oil tanks managed under WMRC’s Used Oil recycling program.
  • R311-200-1(2)(a)(iii)(I). Added exclusion for airport hydrant fueling systems at military facilities.  This is similar to the commercial airport exemption in R311-200-1(2)(a)(iii)(E). 
  • R311-200-1(2)(a)(iii)(J).  Added exclusion for ASTs containing a de minimis concentration of petroleum 
  • R311-200-1(2)(a)(iii)(K).  Added exclusion for ASTs used to store liquefied petroleum gases such as propane
  • R311-200-1(2)(a)(iii)(L).  Added exclusion for aboveground hot-oil tanks used to store petroleum products that will be manufactured into asphalt paving material

R311-202 Federal Underground Storage Tank Regulations

  • R311-202-1. Format and numbering updated to match current Division of Administrative Rules requirements.
  •  R311-202-1(2) Establishes 40 CFR 280 Subparts E, F, and H as the APST requirements and standards for release reporting, investigation, and confirmation; release response and corrective action; and financial responsibility respectively.

R311-206 Underground Storage Tanks:  Certificate of compliance and Financial Assurance Mechanism

  • R311-206-2(1)(b). Sets the financial assurance coverage amounts for APSTs to be the same required for USTs in 40 CFR 280.93. 
  • R311-206-3(1)(e).  Clarify that the financial assurance needed to qualify for a certificate of compliance is either participation in the Environmental Assurance Program or another mechanism allowed by the rule.

Text of proposed rule changes

Comments on the proposed changes will be accepted at the DERR offices until 5:00 pm on Friday, March 31, 2023. Comments made by email will be accepted until the end of the day on March 31, 2023.  Written comments that are postmarked by March 31, 2023, will also be accepted for the public comment record. 

A public hearing will be held on March 13, 2023, at 2:00 p.m. at the following location:

Multi Agency State Office Building, Room 1015
195 North 1950 West
Salt Lake City, Utah 84116

Comments can be sent to

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