The images that we see associated with fuel tanks are often on the extreme side of things, from benign tanks, fuel pumps and infrastructure at service stations that we barely blink an eye at, to visions of tanks and petrol exploding. An example of this in the media a few years ago was on The Block, where a fuel tank was discovered and labelled a “ticking time bomb”. The now infamous foreman, Keith, said that “”If that had of exploded, see you later Block. This whole place would have blown up.”
While tanks certainly can explode, in reality, the most common and expensive part of UPSS is their potential to leak, releasing fuel into the environment.
The Protection of the Environment Operations (Underground Petroleum Storage Systems) Regulation 2019 was introduced in NSW to take a preventative approach to minimise the risk of contamination from underground petroleum storage systems (UPSSs).
An overview of the UPSS Regulation and associated requirements is summarised herein.