2013-04-11 / Top News

NRCS to offer oil spill help

The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is extending the two-year SPCC pilot effort to provide assistance to North Dakota producers who are required to comply with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations related to environmental damage from accidental on-farm oil spills for an additional year.

“The SPCC pilot program has been very successful in helping producers comply with EPA regulations, develop plans to protect human health and the environment, and mitigate oil spills,” NRCS State Conservationist Mary Podoll said. “We are delighted to offer financial assistance through this program in helping North Dakotans reduce the dangers of on-farm oil spills.”

The purpose of the SPCC program is to prevent oil spills into waters of the United States and adjoining shorelines. A key element of this program calls for farmers to have an oil spill prevention plan—an SPCC plan—to help farmers prevent oil spills, which may damage water resources needed for farming operations.

All oil storage facilities, including farms with more than 1,320 gallons of aboveground storage, are subject to the SPCC regulation. The EPA rules require that a registered Professional Engineer (PE) prepare and certify the SPCC plans for producers with more than 10,000 gallons of above-ground liquid storage capacity. Producers with less than 10,000 gallons of oil or fuel capacity are not required to hire a registered PE to prepare their plan and may self-certify.

Due to declared natural disasters in many States, EPA has extended the date by which farms must prepare or amend and implement their SPCC plans to May 10, 2013. All regulated farms that started operation prior to August 16, 2002, should already have an SPCC plan in place.

Applications for SPCC are accepted on a continuous basis. Applications received before close of business on Fri., April 19, 2013, will be eligible for fiscal year 2013 funding consideration. For more information about SPCC please contact your local NRCS service center.

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