Oil Storage

Key Legislation:

For more detail on the Legislation relevant to this page, please use the following links:

Supporting Legislation
Guidance The Environment Agency provides detailed guidance through its NetRegs website as follows:

The Environment Agency has also produced the following good practice guidance for situations where the oil storage regulations do not apply:

SEPA also provides guidance via:

Consent Needed: No consent/exemption is required.
How to Apply: N/A
Who to Apply to: N/A
When to Apply: N/A
Implementation of Regulations in Scotland: In Scotland the Regulations come into force in 3 following stages:

  1. New build tanks have to comply immediately.
  2. Existing tanks at significant risk (i.e. facilities that are located within 10 metres of any surface water or 50 metres of a borehole) or well will have to comply by 1 April 2008.
  3. All remaining existing tanks will have to comply by 1 April 2010.
Non Compliance: In a case where the Environmental Regulator (EA or SEPA) considers there is a significant risk of pollution of controlled waters from stored oil, they may serve a notice requiring the person responsible to carry out works or to take precautions to minimise that risk. The Notice must:

  • Specify or describe the works required
  • State the period within which any such requirement is to be complied with (this period cannot be later than 28 days).
Right of Appeal: Any person served with a Notice can appeal to the Secretary of State within 28 days of that notice.
Offence: Failure to comply with any of the storage requirements set out in Regulations 3 to 5 or with a notice issued under Regulation 7 is a criminal offence (see Regulation 9), punishable on conviction on indictment to an unlimited fine or on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum (currently £5,000).
Scottish Oil Storage Regulations:

The regulations apply to all types of oil including, diesel, mineral oil, heating oil, lubricating oil, waste oil, vegetable and plant oil and biodiesel.

Environmental Liability Directive 2004/35/EC: The Environmental Liability Directive was adopted in 2004 and was required to be implemented by 30 April 2007. The Directive enforces strict liability for prevention and remediation of environmental damage to ‘biodiversity’, water and land from specified activities and remediation of environmental damage for all other activities through fault or negligence. The Environmental Liability Directive is now implemented in England and Wales (see Environmental Liability). The Scottish Government has completed its second consultation and regulations are pending. Following the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010 and the European Commission’s communication “Facing the challenge of the safety of offshore oil and gas activities”(published in October 2010), the EU Directive on the “Safety of Offshore Oil and Gas Operations” was published on 28 June 2013 (Directive 2013/30/EU (PDF document)).