Tuesday, July 12, 2011

New Jersey Defers Offering Payouts for Underground Tank Removals

by Duane Craig

Thank to http://pollutionissues.com for
the graphic.
In places like New Jersey where it was popular to bury residential fuel oil tanks those old tanks are now considered a liability and many homeowners must remove them before they can sell their homes.

New Jersey has a fund that picks up about 90 percent of the costs but because of state budget problems the reimbursements under that fund have been halted. Nobody knows how many underground residential storage tanks there are in the state since they have been largely unregulated and unaccounted for. The Petroleum Underground Storage Tank Remediation, Upgrade and Closure Fund has helped remove 14,000 tanks of between 550 and 3,000 gallons from private homes. The state does keep track of USTs larger than those and currently has remediation efforts on 3,245 of those statewide.

Underground Tanks A Large Contamination Source

According to a New York Times report, even though a large percentage of underground tanks will last 30 to 40 years without leaking, most experts agree that they will leak in due time and that when burying the tank is the only option, newer tank materials will last 200 years with no appreciable deterioration underground.

The state is still willing to assist homeowners with leaking tanks that pose an immediate environmental threat when those homeowners cannot afford to pay for the removal themselves.

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