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Underground Petroleum Storage

Underground petroleum storage systems (UPSS) can leak and contaminate surrounding land and groundwater, creating risks to human health and the environment.

UPSS are most common at service stations but may be found where fuel is used, for example at work depots, airports, agricultural industries or government facilities. Operators of UPSS must have systems in place to prevent, report, and fix leaks if they happen.

The UPSS Regulation

The Protection of the Environment Operations (Underground Petroleum Storage Systems) Regulation 2019 (PDF 311KB) (UPSS Regulation ) aims to minimise the risk to human health and the environment by requiring best practice design, installation, maintenance, and monitoring of UPSS in NSW.

Responsibility for UPSS

The person responsible for a UPSS is the person who has ‘management and control’ of the system. The person responsible must have procedures and systems in place to detect and fix any fuel leaks as early as possible, and document these in a Fuel System Operation Plan for the site.

It is against the law to allow or ignore contamination resulting from a leaking or faulty UPSS. The person responsible for the UPSS has a duty to notify pollution incidents immediately and then provide a completed UPSS Leak Notification Form to the Appropriate Regulatory Authority within 30 days.

In the Hawkesbury area, Hawkesbury City Council is the appropriate regulatory authority commencing on 1 September 2019.

Page ID: 162101

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