Laura Goldfarb speaks to ACEC about the WV Aboveground Storage Tank Act and Proposed Rules

On September 16, 2014, Laura Goldfarb, environmental attorney with Steptoe & Johnson PLLC spoke to the local chapter of the American Council of Engineering Companies about the impact the Aboveground Storage Tank (AST) Act (W. Va. Code § 22-30-1 et seq.) will have on professional engineers and their clients. The AST Act applies to all ASTs, which are defined as those devices that are made to contain 1,3020 gallons or more, contain liquids at standard temperature and pressure, constructed of non-carbon material, 90% aboveground, not including process vessels or mobile devices on-site less than 60 days. Also excluded are shipping containers/railroad cars subject to federal regulation; barges or boats subject to federal regulation; and swimming pools. The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP or agency) is in the process of developing an administrative regulatory program to implement the AST Act. 

The AST Act contains the following near term deadlines: 1) registration requirements for all ASTs (as that term is defined in the Act) by October 1, 2014, 2) Spill Prevention Response Plans submittals by December 3, 2014, 3) Inspection of ASTs by a qualified person by January 1, 2015. The agency released an interpretive rule on September 9, 2014 to create guidance for the AST tank inspection, certification (W. Va. Code 22-30-6) and spill prevention response plan (W. Va. Code 22-30-9) requirements. The 30-day written comment period for the proposed rule will end October 09, 2014.  A public hearing will be at WVDEP headquarters in Charleston, West Virginia on October 9, at 6:30 pm.

The WVDEP should file an Emergency Rule regarding the completed set of regulations for the Aboveground Storage Tank Act as a separate action to this Interpretive Rule in the immediate future.

Laura Goldfarb helps clients resolve their environmental policy, regulation, and enforcement problems. Prior to joining Steptoe & Johnson, Ms. Goldfarb was Assistant Counsel at the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, where she represented the agency in a variety of matters relating to the state's environmental programs, and drafted regulatory and statutory environmental provisions for the State of West Virginia.
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