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Bulk Storage

of Chemicals, Petroleum, and Liquefied Natural Gas

Revised PBS and CBS Regulations Effective 10/11/2015

Improper handling and storage of petroleum, hazardous substances/chemicals or liquefied natural gas (LNG) can result in spills that threaten the environment or pose health and safety risks to nearby persons. Across the state, there have been instances of spills of petroleum or chemicals that have caused groundwater contamination including some public water supplies. Storage and handling of LNG poses primarily fire safety concerns and risks from handling a cryogenic (extremely cold) material.

Based upon several federal and state laws, regulations, and guidance documents, DEC has developed programs to establish requirements for the safe storage and handling of these materials, inspection programs to verify that these requirements are being met, and enforcement procedures to require that violations be corrected and deter future non-compliance. Based upon the various authorizing laws, DEC has created the following bulk storage programs:

A huge black storage tank being installed underground
Underground storage tank installation.

Petroleum Bulk Storage (PBS) Program

The PBS program applies to facilities that store more than 1,100 gallons of petroleum in aboveground and underground storage tanks. Facilities with one or more underground storage tanks larger than 110 gallons must also be registered. All tanks (with some exceptions) for the storage of petroleum at facilities must be registered with the DEC and managed in compliance with applicable regulations for the storage and handling of petroleum.

Chemical Bulk Storage (CBS) Program

The CBS program applies to facilities that store a "hazardous substance" listed in 6 NYCRR Part 597 in an aboveground storage tank larger than 185 gallons, any size underground storage tank, with some exceptions, or in a non-stationary tank used to store 1,000 kg or more for a period of 90 consecutive days or more. All regulated tanks at facilities must be registered with the DEC and managed in compliance with applicable regulations for the storage and handling of hazardous substances.

Federal Underground Tank Regulations

Certain underground storage tanks (USTs) storing petroleum or hazardous substances/chemicals are also subject to federal regulations (40 CFR Part 280) from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA).

New Requirements for PBS, MOSF, & CBS UST Operator Training

Operators ("Class A and Class B") of certain federally-regulated USTs storing petroleum or hazardous substances are required to be trained, pass a DEC-administered competence examination, and be designated for their facilities by 10/11/2016. Tank owners or authorized representatives of facilities with these USTs must designate their Class A and Class B Operators with the DEC by this same deadline. Class C Operators must also be designated by 10/11/2016 but are not required to pass the DEC exam.

Major Oil Storage Facility (MOSF) Program

The MOSF program applies to facilities that store a total of 400,000 gallons or more of petroleum in aboveground and underground storage tanks. Facilities must be licensed by the DEC and managed in compliance with applicable regulations for the storage and handling of petroleum. Vessels that transfer petroleum to another vessel while operating in the waters of NYS must also obtain an MOSF license prior to these transfers. As applicable, both on-shore MOSFs and MOSF vessels must submit monthly license fees and surcharges to the DEC. These fees apply to each barrel of petroleum the first time that the petroleum is imported into NYS (see Navigation Law Section 174).

Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG ) Program

The LNG program applies to facilities that store LNG or convert it back into a gas, with some exceptions. Facilities must be permitted by DEC and managed in compliance with applicable regulations for the storage and handling of LNG.


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