Pursuant to 40 CFR §112.7(d), if a facility owner or operator finds that secondary containment methods are not practicable, the SPCC Rule allows for alternative modes of protection to prevent and contain oil discharges if additional requirements are met. How might determining impracticability under §112.7(d) affect a facility’s FRP requirements under Part 112 Subpart D?
An impracticability determination under the SPCC regulations may affect the applicability of the FRP requirements as well as the calculation of the worst case discharge volume identified in the FRP, which may impact the amount of resources required to respond to a worst case discharge scenario. Regarding applicability, the owner or operator of any non-transportation related onshore facility that could reasonably be expected to cause substantial harm to the environment by discharging oil into or on the navigable waters or adjoining shorelines shall prepare and submit an FRP to the Regional Administrator (§112.20(a)). If a facility determines that secondary containment is impracticable and does not have secondary containment for each above ground storage area that is sufficiently large to contain the capacity of the largest aboveground oil storage tank within each storage area plus sufficient freeboard to allow for precipitation, and the facility’s total oil storage capacity is greater than or equal to one million gallons, it could be expected to cause substantial harm to the environment as outlined in §112.20(f)(1).
Additionally, pursuant to §112.20(h)(5)(i), an FRP must include a discussion of specific planning scenarios for a worst case discharge, as calculated using the appropriate worksheet in Part 112, Appendix D. An impracticability determination may affect the calculation of the worst case discharge volume; specifically, if adequate secondary containment does not exist, it can increase the worst case discharge volume to be used for response planning in Appendix E (specifically in Attachment E-1) for the facility.
Additional information about the FRP regulations is available at the following URL: