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Guide MassDEP Underground Storage Tank (UST) Program

The Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) regulates the registration, installation, operation, maintenance, inspection, and closure of petroleum fuel and hazardous substance UST systems.

Table of Contents

News & Updates

October 2021

MassDEP implemented amendments to its Underground Storage Tank (UST) regulations at 310 CMR 80.00 to make them at least as stringent as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) UST regulations at 40 CFR 280 and 281, as well as to clarify and enhance other UST program requirements.

MassDEP also announced changes in its Stage I Vapor Recovery Program that may affect you. See the document in Additional Resources below to learn more.

Earlier updates:

  • All Massachusetts USTs with submersible pumps not upgraded with turbine sumps by January 1, 2019, should by now have been removed or permanently closed in place.
  • Single-Walled Steel Tanks (SWSTs) had to be removed or permanently closed in place by July 1, 2018.
  • Until further notice, MassDEP is not enforcing (1) tank and piping tightness testing standards that took effect on January 1, 2018, or (2) requirements that piping be tested before regulated substances are put in tanks.

Questions? Contact us.

Additional Resources for News & Updates

Facility Owners & Operators

Owner/operators of underground storage tank (UST) systems in Massachusetts are required to:

  • Meet all registration, compliance, and reporting requirements of 310 CMR 80.00 by using the UST Data Management System. Follow the Key Actions link below. If you are new to online filing, please see Online Filing & Forms before beginning.
  • Employ at least one MassDEP-certified Class A, B and C Operator for every UST system (see Key Actions for certification details and Additional Resources below for a current list of those who have passed their exams).
  • Ensure that all UST systems and components are inspected every three years by a MassDEP-certified Third-Party Inspector (TPI). See the TPI Search in Key Actions.
  • Submit a Compliance Self-Certification to MassDEP every three years via the UST Data Management System.
  • Demonstrate sufficient financial resources to pay for environmental and other damages if their tanks release a regulated substance. See Additional Resources for details.

Additional Resources for Facility Owners & Operators

Third-Party Inspections & Inspectors

The owners/operators of most underground storage tank (UST) systems in Massachusetts are required to have those systems and their components inspected every three years by Third-Party Inspectors (TPIs).

MassDEP's TPI Certification Program ensures that those responsible for inspecting UST systems have the necessary knowledge and understanding of how these systems work. Qualified individuals are certified for five years and need to apply for renewal at least 90 days before their current certifications expire. 

Hired directly by tank owner/operators, these professionals document the results of their on-site inspections, review facility record keeping to ensure it meets state requirements, and report their inspection findings to the MassDEP via nSPECT, an online reporting system.

Although TPIs provide compliance advice to their clients, they are not authorized to enforce laws or regulations.

See Key Actions and Additional Resources below to learn more.

Additional Resources for Third-Party Inspections & Inspectors

Online Filing & Forms

Use the UST Data Management System in Key Actions below to register underground storage tanks with MassDEP, notify the agency of changes in their status, and report the results of third-party inspections.

Notes:

  • If you are new to online filing, see Instructions for New Owners of UST Systems in Additional Resources below.
  • As a new user, you will also need to create an account and submit a completed and notarized Standard Proof of Identity Form, also available below. You may fill out and save the Microsoft Word form on your computer. The PDF version has to be printed out and completed by hand.
  • Only if you are unable to file online, obtain the forms you need from the Download Center below.

Additional Resources for Online Filing & Forms

Regulations & Policies

October 2021

MassDEP implemented amendments to its Underground Storage Tank (UST) regulations at 310 CMR 80.00 to make them at least as stringent as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) UST regulations at 40 CFR 280 and 281, as well as to clarify and enhance other UST program requirements.

The MassDEP UST regulation was previously amended in January 2015. See Additional Resources below for:

  • The full regulation and an FAQ.
  • A schedule of important deadlines for upgrading, testing, and inspecting specific types of equipment and systems.
  • Information about MassDEP enforcement discretion.

See also: 310 CMR 40.000 (site and spill cleanup) and 503 CMR 4.00 (21J fund UST cleanup fees)

Additional Resources for Regulations & Policies

USTs in Massachusetts

See Key Actions below for:

  • A searchable, sortable public database of underground storage tank facilities in your community and across Massachusetts. 
  • Current data on active UST facilities in Massachusetts, UST system inspection findings, and confirmed product releases.
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