The Utah State Underground Storage Tank (UST) Program is a branch of the Department of Environmental Quality. The primary goal of the UST Program is to protect human health and the environment from leaking underground storage tanks (LUST). The UST staff oversees: UST notification, installation, inspection, removal, and compliance with State and Federal regulations concerning UST release prevention and remediation.
As a result of a federal mandate, the State of Utah amended the Solid and Hazardous Waste Act in 1986 which established the Utah UST Program. In 1989, the Underground Storage Tank Act was enacted; it details the duties and responsibilities of the Director of the Division of Environmental Response and Remediation (DERR), the Solid and Hazardous Waste Control Board, and the Utah UST Program Authority. The act established the Petroleum Storage Tank (PST) Fund and provides certain requirements for UST owners and operators.
What is an Underground Storage Tank?
An UST is a tank system, including piping connected to the tank, that has at least 10 percent of its volume underground. Federal and state regulations apply only to those USTs containing petroleum products or certain hazardous chemicals. USTs not regulated include:
- Farm or residential tanks 1,100 gallons or less, used non-commercially.
- Tanks storing heating oil, used on the premises.
- Flow-through process tanks.
- Emergency spill and overflow tanks.
- Tanks holding 110 gallons or less.
- Others as described in the federal register.
Why are USTs Regulated?
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), with the help of the regulated industry, developed regulations concerning UST owners and operators. The goals of these regulations include:
- To prevent leaks and spills.
- To find leaks and spills.
- To correct the problems created by leaks and spills.
- To ensure the owners and operators can pay for clean-up associated with leaking USTs.
- To ensure that Utah has a regulatory program that complies with the Federal regulations.
Utah obtains more than 50% of the population’s drinking water from groundwater. The regulations in place are meant to protect this valuable public resource. When an UST leaks, it becomes a Leaky Underground Storage Tank (LUST) and poses a risk to human health and the environment. Currently, there are more than 3,000 LUST sites in Utah. These sites have resulted in contaminated ground water and in some cases, explosive situations.
For more information regarding the EPA UST regulations, please visit “Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)” on the EPA’s UST site.
Who Makes Up the Utah UST Program?
The Director of the Division of Environmental Response and Remediation is an individual who has the authority to administer the UST Program as established by the Utah Legislature. The Director answers to the Utah Solid and Hazardous Waste Control Board which consists of approximately ten individuals appointed by the Governor.
The UST section of the Division of Environmental Response and Remediation, is a group of environmental scientists whose task is to oversee the regulated public in issues that concern the operational life of USTs up to proper closing of UST systems. The UST staff has tracked about 15,000 USTs and currently regulates approximately 4,300 USTs at more than 1,500 different facilities. UST staff members perform compliance inspections, issue compliance notices, and serve as expert witnesses at administrative hearings. Outreach classes and seminars are taught throughout the state.
The LUST section of DERR oversees remediation of contamination from USTs. LUST scientists and engineers review and establish clean-up guidelines. When responsible parties are not available or are unable to pay for the remediation of a LUST site, the LUST staff may use LUST-Trust money to define the degree of hazard, initiate abatement actions, and remediate the site. Funds spent will be recovered from responsible parties. Often, responsible parties seek the guidance of the LUST staff to insure clean-up in a timely and economical fashion.
Administrative Support Section
The administrative support section oversees the collection of UST fees and monitors expenditures. Accountants and technicians answer questions concerning billings and distribute funds as appropriate.
What are the Requirements for Owner/Operators of Underground Storage Tank Systems?
- Notify the DERR of all regulated USTs with EPA Notification Form 7530-1 (276 KB)
- Pay any applicable fees.
- Obtain a Certificate of Compliance.
- Maintain compliance with regulations.
- Upgrade USTs when required.
- Report any UST release to the DERR.
- Remediate contamination.
- Remove UST appropriately.
Comments and Questions
You can obtain more information by contacting us:
Division of Environmental Response and Remediation
195 North 1950 West
Salt Lake City, Utah 84116
Phone: (801) 536-4100
- Accessing the Petroleum Storage Tank (PST) Fund
- Newsletter: Utah Tank News
- PST Fund Financial Viability Study (1.16 MB)
A financial viability study of the Petroleum Storage Tank Trust Fund.
- Reporting a Release From Underground Storage Tanks (Spills)
- Reporting Spills
- Summary Information on USTs (12 KB)
Utah’s summary information; required by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 Grant Guidelines. Updated December 7, 2020.
- UST and LUST Files
A stepwise search of records that are available electronically. Not all UST/LUST records are currently available. (Disclaimer)
- Tank Fees: Summary | Payment
Pay fees online, plus information on registration, PST Fund, Red Tag, and other tank fees.
- UST Compliance Report (212.86 KB)
Utah’s government owned; required by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 Grant Guidelines.
- UST Issues Email Alerts Sign Up
Be personally notified when important issues arise concerning Underground Storage Tank owners, operators, and contractors.
- UST Priority Assessment Tool
Currently, sites with the highest priority assessment are inspected more frequently. See how upgrades to your facility will affect its assessment.
Mailing AddressP.O. Box 144840
Salt Lake City, Utah
Fax: (801) 359-8853
24 Hour Phone Number
State Office Building
195 North 1950 West
Salt Lake City, Utah
8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.