An underground storage tank (UST) system is a tank and any underground piping connected to the tank that has at least 10 percent of its combined volume underground.
An aboveground storage tank (AST) is defined, per IC 13-11-2-0.4, as a tank or combination of tanks:
- Used to store a regulated substance.
- The volume of which, including aboveground piping, has not more than 10% below the surface of the ground.
- With a capacity of over 1,500 gallons but not more than 20,000 gallons.
- Which is used at:
- A bulk plant or facility for bulk storage and distribution of motor fuel to retailers; or
- An airport, including both primary and nonprimary airports.
The Office of Land Quality (OLQ) does not regulate every type of storage tank. OLQ regulations apply only to tank systems that store petroleum or certain hazardous substances. OLQ helps tank owners and operators understand the regulations to encourage compliance.
On July 1, 2023, IDEM began administering contractor certifications for those who install, upgrade, and decommission underground storage tanks (USTs). Previously, these certifications were administered by the State Fire Marshal. All unexpired certifications issued by IDHS will remain in effect until expiration.
Contractor certification questions can be directed to the following e-mail ContractorCertification@idem.IN.gov.
Federal law requires UST owners to register all USTs storing regulated substances that are brought into use after May 8, 1986, or USTs in the ground as of May 8, 1986, that have stored regulated substances at any time since January 1, 1974.
On July 1, 2023, state law requires regulated aboveground storage tanks (AST) be registered with IDEM.
IDEM has updated the forms required for notification. (Forms and instructions are available on the IDEM Forms page.)
As of July 1, 2014, OLQ collects tank fees based on a calendar year of January 1 to December 31. They are $90 per year for each regulated petroleum tank and $245 per year for each hazardous substance tank.
All of Indiana’s UST facilities must designate individuals as Class A, B, or C operators for various responsibilities of system operations. They must be certified in different aspects of system maintenance and operations. OLQ provides the required training and certification program for free through the Regulatory Services Portal. Please review the UST Operator Training Quick Start Guide [PDF] for more information.
When a regulated UST or AST has a leak or spill, OLQ is responsible for ensuring adequate investigation and cleanup of the resulting contamination. To guarantee that a UST system and its affected area are properly addressed, state and federal laws require owners and operators of UST systems to have financial responsibility. The Excess Liability Trust Fund (ELTF) is a dedicated state trust fund that serves as a financial responsibility mechanism for UST owners and operators. It provides their federally mandated financial assurance and a source of money to pay for cleanup or compensate third parties for any injuries or damages associated with releases from regulated USTs. OLQ manages the ELTF in accordance with the rules in 328 Indiana Administrative Code 1 [PDF].