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USTs by the Numbers - UST Training

March 1, 2013

Every once in a while we like to look at the national picture of Underground Storage Tank compliance and wonder how effective is UST operator training, or, for that matter, how effective is UST enforcement by implementing agencies. If you go to EPA’s Office of Underground Storage Tank (OUST) UST Performance Measures you can see how states, regions and tribes are doing. For Instance

Big Picture

  • 483,508 Regulated USTs Active
  • 1,777,339 Regulated USTs Closed (73%)
  • 507,540 Confirmed Releases
  • 426,637 Cleanups Complete (84%)

Leaks in 2012 (Oct. 1, 2011 through Sep. 30, 2012)

  • 5,674 total leaks confirmed
  • EPA Region with most leaks (Region 5, IL, IN, MI, MN, OH, WI)
  • States with most leaks (Illinois = 367; New York = 336)
  • State with least leaks (North Dakota = 1; Guam, CNMI, both zero)

UST Significant Operational Compliance

  • Most compliant states? Montana = 95%, Wyoming = 92%, New Jersey = 90%, USVI = 90%)
  • Least compliant states? Puerto Rico =  22%, Massachusetts = 32%, New Hampshire = 51%, Kansas and Michigan, both = 55%)
  • Most Likely to be Inspected? California = a whooping 13,825, Texas = 7,565, Florida = 6,627, South Carolina = 3,985, Pennsylvania = 3,499, Georgia = 3,495, Oklahoma = 3,477, Wisconsin 3,292, New York = 3,027
  • Most Likely to be red tagged? Georgia = 593, South Carolina = 551, Florida = 447, Illinois = 443, Wisconsin = 168
  • Least likely to be red tagged? MA, ME, PR, USVI, DC, NM, TX NE, ND, SD, AS, GU, HI, CNMI ID and WA all zero

 

So what does all this mean? In theory, states who have a decent inspection, red tag and operator training program should have the best compliance and the least leaks. Unfortunately, EPA doesn’t yet report on what states have operator training rules and how compliant each state is with percent trained so we cannot prove the relationship between training, compliance and enforcement. Hopefully we’ll get enough data soon to see if our theory is correct.

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