HARRISBURG, Pa., June 27, 2012 /PR Newswire/ -- Governor Tom Corbett today signed into law extensions of two important programs that enable the Department of Environmental Protection to prevent and clean up contamination due to abandoned or leaking underground storage tanks. The programs, which were set to expire June 30, are extended through June 30, 2017.
'In addition to carrying out cleanups that protect public health and the environment from leaking fuel tanks, these programs also allow us to work with homeowners and small businesses to respond to heating oil spills and old tanks,' DEP Secretary Mike Krancer said. 'I thank the legislature for taking swift action on this issue.'
Amendments to the Storage Tank and Spill Prevention Act in 1998 created the Underground Storage Tank Environmental Cleanup Program and the Underground Storage Tank Pollution Prevention Program.
The cleanup program authorizes DEP to use money from the Underground Storage Tank Indemnification Fund (USTIF) to clean up sites contaminated by old or leaking underground fuel tanks, typically when there is no financially solvent responsible party. DEP is currently involved with 25 such cleanups across the state. USTIF is supported by fees paid by tank owners on petroleum products, such as gasoline, diesel and kerosene.
The cleanup program also allows DEP to provide reimbursement grants of up to $4,000 to owners of underground storage tanks, with a capacity of 3,000 gallons or less, for cleaning up heating oil releases.
The pollution prevention program provides funding of up to $2,500 per tank to individuals who have small underground tanks on their property that need to be pumped out, cleaned and plugged.
There are 23,436 actively regulated underground storage tanks in Pennsylvania.
For more information, visit www.dep.state.pa.us or call 717-783-9475.
Media contact: Kevin Sunday, 717-787-1323
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection