Why Bill 2811 Will Alter the Storage Tank Regulations in West Virginia

Big metal water tanks

According to the WV Gazette Mail, Bill 2811, introduced just two days ago, will alter the West Virginia state laws regarding chemical tank safety. The House of Delegates opted to overwhelmingly pass HB 2811 at 94 to 5, which will now allow some gas industry storage tanks to be exempt from existing aboveground tank regulation (the bill must still go to the Senate for confirmation). Nearly 70% of existing chemical storage tanks (nearly 30,000) covered by the current law would be made exempt from it, going forward.

Why Field Erected Tank Companies Support the Bill

Naturally, there were people both for and against the bill. Many involved in the industry argued against overregulation and the difficulty of managing the cost of compliance, while community members were worried about potential threats to the public water supply. The bills? supporters argue that the exemption would apply to smaller tanks that aren?t located in a ?zone of critical concern.? The tanks must be under 9,000 gallons, contain more environmentally friendly materials (such as above ground water tanks or saline tanks) and need to be located beyond five hours from a drinking water intake area.

Many also see it as a mitigator of sorts — when resources for public services are already thin, the bill can help better direct regulation to the above ground tanks that stand to create the most damage in the event of an accident.

On the other hand, the West Virginia Environmental Legislation has claimed that the revision bill would ?undercut the protections? of the original bill, which was intended to assure public safety.

What Needs to Happen Regardless of the Bill

Regardless of whether the bill ultimately passes or not, it’s important for local businesses to stay on top of state regulations. Custom storage tanks are one potential solution for making sure all regulations are followed. It’s also important that field erected tank companies pay the necessary fees for each and every storage tank rental. The WV Gazette Mail indicates that tanks with a capacity of more than 1,320 gallons, registered after July 2015 are required to file with the DEP and pay a fee of $40. Read this website for more information.