Clean Water Act Info Offered for NC Farmers

The EPA, under the Clean Water Act, has mandated that on-farm fuel storage must have a spill plan. Ag Compliance will be hosting a series of informational meetings, starting today, and Jorge Vara II, compliance consultant with Ag Compliance, professional engineering firm:

“Here recently there was a deadline that passed; May 10th, 2013, where if you are a farmer or rancher and you have the capacity to store oils and fuels on your farm then the EPA is requiring you to have a SPCC Plan, or spill plan, and this affects quite a few farmers in North Carolina. And so, the Coop Extension offices are hosting these meetings, but we’re the engineering firm that will be presenting the information. It’s about 45 minutes long. And when a farmer comes out to a meeting, they can get all the information they need to kind of clear up some confusion on this topic.”

As far as a farmer needed to comply with the new mandate, Vara explains there’s some storage capacity parameters:

“There’s two different things; a farmer doesn’t have to do this until they hit a certain level of total aggregate storage. Now, the containers that are counted are 55 gallons or greater. So, if there’s a container that’s less than that it does not count towards the storage capacity. For above-ground tanks the minimum number would be 1,320 gallons, so once a farmer exceeds that number, they may have to actually comply to get the spill plan. The below-ground storage is actually 42,000 gallons. So, if they are below 42,000 gallons of below-ground storage then the law would not apply to them.”

And not all types of petroleum based fuels require a spill plan says Vara:

“There’s actually a whole list of oils. The most common one that farmers would have that would be exempt would be propane, that would not count. The most popular ones would be the diesel fuel, gasoline, waste oils, fuel oil sludges, any type of crude oil, cutting oils, transformer oils, those are some of the more popular ones that a farmer would actually have on their own farm.”

Over the course of this week, Ag Compliance will be hosting meetings in several eastern NC counties says Vara:

“Well, there’s quite a few counties across the eastern side of the state and that’s where our focus is going to be. We’d tried to pick some counties that are centrally located but also had a lot of farmers. Obviously, there’s not going to be a time that fits everyone, but we did our best to accommodate. At this time it’s going to be the 22nd through the 26th, and the eight counties and there’s actually 17 different meetings. The eight counties that we’re going to be in are to be in are Franklin, Edgecombe, Gates, North Hampton, Beaufort, Johnston, Robeson and Duplin County.”

For more information visit our website, SFNToday dot com for a link.
Jorge Vara with Ag Compliance. is dedicated to serving the agricultural industry in the Carolinas and Virginia with the latest ag news, exclusive regional weather station readings, and key crop market information. The website is a companion of the Southern Farm Network, provider of daily agricultural radio programming to the Carolinas since 1974. presents radio programs, interviews and news relevant to crop and livestock production and research throughout the mid-Atlantic agricultural community.