By Terrance I. Norton
Oil leaks from aboveground tanks have infected soil and water, threatening human future health and natural world. to avoid harm from oil spills, the Environmental safety employer (EPA) issued the Spill Prevention, regulate, and Countermeasure (SPCC) rule in 1973. EPA's 10 areas check up on oil garage amenities to make sure compliance with the guideline. EPA estimates that approximately 571,000 amenities are topic to this rule. a few states additionally keep watch over oil garage tanks. GAO made up our minds how EPA areas enforce the SPCC application, the knowledge EPA has to enforce and review this system, and no matter if a few states' tank courses recommend methods for EPA to enhance its software. GAO surveyed all 10 EPA areas and interviewed officers in EPA and 6 states chosen at the foundation of specialists' innovations, between different standards.
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Extra resources for Aboveground Oil Storage Tanks
EPA regions have also used other strategies to both identify SPCC facilities and target them for inspection. For example, Region 6 has developed its own geographic information system (GIS)—the On-Scene Coordinators Area Response System (OSCARS)—to identify facilities that may pose a high risk of spills into or upon navigable waters and adjoining shorelines. OSCARS provides regional inspectors with a graphics-based tool that integrates basic geographic information with separate locationbased data sets, such as the location of lakes, waterways, and roads with industrial infrastructure, such as regulated facilities and pipelines.
According to Region 6 officials, OSCARS has allowed them to more effectively target problem sites and identify egregious regulation violators. They consider OSCARS of particular importance in Region 6, in which 116 counties contain a large proportion of the nation’s petroleum facilities and exhibit high-risk characteristics such as the potential to cause significant and substantial harm to the Aboveground Oil Storage Tanks 25 environment or public health if a large release into or upon navigable water occurs.
24 Terrance I. Norton officials to the possibility that SPCC facilities may be in the area of a reported spill rather than positively identifying any facilities as being subject to the rule. Nine out of 10 regional offices also reported using referrals from state agencies or other institutions to identify SPCC facilities and target inspections. For example, officials in EPA Region 3—which covers Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia—stated that, for the last 2 years, the region has requested all the states in its region to provide a list of facilities that the states would like inspected, and then incorporated these facilities into its inspection planning for the fiscal year.