Waste Programs Division: Underground Storage Tanks
Tank pull

UST Regulatory Updates

Notice - UST Regulatory Updates -- (PDF)

UST Tax Program Updates

Notice - UST Tax Exemption Certificates -- (PDF)

Revised UST Regulations

On October 13, 2015, the U.S. EPA’s revised UST regulations became effective. Arizona does not have U.S. EPA State Program approval.

UST owners and operators of UST systems in Arizona must comply with both federal and state UST regulations. Compliance deadlines for the federal UST regulations range from October 13, 2015, to October 13, 2018 for USTs installed on or before October 13, 2015. USTs installed on or after October 13, 2015 must fully comply with both the new federal and state UST regulations. U.S. EPA has the authority to enforce federal regulations under federal law. Arizona House Bill 2636 approved by Governor Doug Ducey on April 9, 2015 also revised Arizona UST statutes. The revised statutes impact owners, operators, property owners, and insurance companies in several ways.

Changes effective July 3, 2015

  • UST owners and operators are required to notify ADEQ at least 30 days PRIOR to bringing a tank into operation.

  • UST owners who sell tanks for use as USTs are required to provide documentation that they notified the purchaser of requirements to file updated notification forms to ADEQ.

  • Non-payment of taxes and fees, if not timely corrected, may lead to delivery prohibition.

    1. -- Financial Responsibility Related Requirements --

  • UST insurers are required to notify ADEQ within 30 days after the UST insurance policy termination or non-renewal.

  • Existing insurance policies that are renewed with a more current retroactive date will not satisfy financial responsibility unless a new tank system was installed or a baseline assessment performed.

  • UST owners and operators may request ADEQ’s assistance in pursuing coverage under the financial assurance mechanism they rely upon to demonstrate compliance with financial responsibility.

    1. -- Leak Prevention, Removal and Release Confirmation --

  • Grant Program: UST owners and operators may apply for grants under a new program to assist with UST removal, UST system upgrades and release confirmation actions. UST owners and operators who qualify for grant funding will have up to one year to fulfill the grant and access approved funds. Under this program, the grant applicant will be responsible for acquiring bids, managing the action and submitting costs. COMING SOON

  • State Lead Program: UST owners and operators who don’t wish to manage grant projects themselves, may request ADEQ to manage UST removals and release confirmation actions on their behalf. Contact Mike Latin at (602) 771-4308 for details on how to apply.

    1. -- Release Cleanup --

  • State Lead Program: UST owners and operators and property owners with UST contamination may request ADEQ to manage their cleanup. Eligibility requires the UST owner and operator to file a timely claim against their financial responsibility mechanism and pursue that claim. While pursuing the claim, ADEQ will manage their cleanup. In the case of a property owner who is not an owner or operator, ADEQ may have a lien on the property for unrecovered costs. (This may NOT be used to demonstrate compliance with financial responsibility.) Contact Mike Latin at (602) 771-4308 for details on how to apply.

  • Preapproval Program: UST owners and operators and property owners with UST contamination may qualify for a new cleanup program. Eligibility requires the UST owner and operator to file a timely claim against their financial responsibility mechanism and pursue that claim. While pursuing the claim, ADEQ will assist with cleanup costs. Participants will be required to meet with ADEQ to develop a preapproval scope of work, schedule, budget, and application. (This may NOT be used to demonstrate compliance with financial responsibility.) COMING SOON

  • Time-Barred Claims Program: UST owners and operators who were not able to complete cleanup and did not exhaust their coverage limit under the State Assurance Fund program (SAF) will have a limited amount of time to submit corrective action costs incurred after June 30, 2010 through December 31, 2016. UST owners and operators have until December 31, 2016 to submit these costs to ADEQ for evaluation.

For Additional Information:

What is an Underground Storage Tank (UST)?

An underground storage tank (UST) system is a tank and any underground piping connected to the tank that has at least ten percent of its combined volume underground. Federal and state UST regulations apply only to underground tanks and piping storing either petroleum or certain hazardous substances.

ADEQ's Waste Programs Division ensures proper operation and maintenance of regulated underground storage tank systems by conducting periodic inspections and assisting owners and operators in complying with applicable state and federal regulations. Enforcement actions are taken in cases of significant non-compliance. The division also protects public health and the environment through oversight, investigation and cleanup of soil and groundwater contamination caused by releases from underground storage tanks.

The UST Program regulates the majority of USTs in Arizona with the exception of those on Indian lands. Nearly all underground storage tanks at these sites contain petroleum. These sites include marketers who sell gasoline to the public (such as service stations and convenience stores) and non-marketers who use tanks solely for their own needs (such as fleet service operators and local governments).

What is "Petroleum"?

Under Arizona Revised Statutes (A.R.S.) § 49-1001: "Petroleum" means petroleum, including crude oil or any fraction of crude oil, which is liquid at sixty degrees Fahrenheit and 14.7 pounds per square inch absolute, and petroleum based substances comprised of a complex blend of hydrocarbons derived from crude oil through processes of separation, conversion, upgrading and finishing, such as motor fuels, residual fuel oils, lubricants, jet fuels, distillate fuel oils, petroleum solvents and used oils.

What is a "Regulated UST?"

Under A.R.S. § 49-1001: "Underground storage tank" means a tank or combination of tanks and underground pipes and impact valves connected to tanks being used or having been used to contain regulated substances and which has at least ten per cent of the total volume of the tank and underground portions of pipes connected to the tank underground. Underground storage tank does not mean any of the following:

  • A farm or residential tank of one thousand one hundred gallons or less capacity used for storing motor fuel for noncommercial purposes.
  • A tank used for storing heating oil for consumptive use on the premises where stored.
  • A septic tank.
  • A pipeline facility, including gathering lines, regulated under either:
    • The natural gas pipeline safety act of 1968 (49 United States Code sections 1671 through 1686).
    • The hazardous liquid pipeline safety act of 1979 (49 United States Code section 2001).
  • An intrastate pipeline facility regulated under a state law comparable to the provisions of law referred to in subdivision (d), item (i) or (ii).
  • A surface impoundment, pit, pond or lagoon.
  • A storm water or wastewater collection system.
  • A flow-through process tank.
  • A liquid trap or associated gathering lines directly related to oil or gas production and gathering operations.
  • A storage tank situated in an underground area, such as a basement, cellar, mine working, drift, shaft or tunnel, if the storage tank is situated on or above the surface of the floor.
  • Pipes connected to any of the structures described in subdivisions (a) through (j).

Compliance with these and other operational and administrative requirements is the responsibility of the UST Program.

Links Within the UST Program

Contact Us LUST Stakeholder Meeting Information
Delivery Prohibition Public Notices
Financial Responsibility State Lead Program
Forms and Guidance UST Policy Commission and Technical Appeals Panel
Inspections & Compliance UST Database Search
Leaking UST Investigations & Cleanups UST and LUST Statewide Locations
Leaking Underground Storage Tank Enforcement Unit Video Gallery

Delivery Prohibition

To view the most updated facilities under delivery prohibition, visit our new website at: http://azdeq.gov/ust/DeliveryProhibition

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Video Gallery

Fountain Hills Soil Vapor Sampling

Located approximately thirty miles northeast of downtown Phoenix, Fountain Hills, Arizona is known for the towering man-made fountain located in the center of town. ADEQ was there, working in a residential neighborhood near an elementary school as part of its State Lead underground storage tank program. The Lead program is so named because ADEQ assumes the responsibility for corrective actions where the responsible party is unknown, unwilling, or unable to undertake site investigations and cleanups. The purpose of testing soil vapor is to determine whether there is any risk to public health from the contaminated groundwater beneath the area. Twenty years ago there was a gas station across the street from the school that leaked contaminants into the soil and water. If there is contamination that requires cleanup, ADEQ will work to mitigate the risk so the public will be safe. The work is paid for by the penny-per-gallon tax on all fuels sold within Arizona.

Red Rock UST Removal

Located between Phoenix and Tucson off Interstate 10, Red Rock, Arizona is a mostly an agricultural area, although the city has recently seen construction of tract home communities. ADEQ was at an abandoned gas station as part of their State Lead program, so named because ADEQ takes charge of the underground storage tank removal and assessment for possible soil and groundwater contamination because the property has been abandoned. At this site, ADEQ removed three 8,000 gallon steel tanks used for gasoline storage and one 550 gallon tank used to house used oil in order to adequately assess contamination risks. If there is contamination that requires cleanup, ADEQ will work to mitigate the risk so the area can be redeveloped.