New regulations affect farm fuel storage

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If you store more than 1,320 gallons of fuel or other petroleum products on your farm, you will need a written plan for preventing and handling spills. The plans are covered in U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulation amendments that take effect Nov. 10, says Fred Whitford, coordinator of Purdue University Pesticide Programs.

Under the new amendments, only petroleum products stored in stationary tanks and containers of at least 55 gallons are counted toward the regulated total. Gasoline, diesel fuel and oil in tractors, trucks and other vehicular machinery are exempt.

You would not be required to write a SPCC plan if more than 1,320 gallons of petroleum products are stored on separate farms, so long as no single farm stores the regulated minimum. “If you’re between 1,321 gallons and 10,000 gallons, you can self-certify your written plan. If you’re at greater than 10,000 gallons, the plan has to be written by a certified professional engineer,” says Whitford. ”The EPA is looking to divide the smaller everyday users of products from those that store much larger quantities.”

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