Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) for Agriculture
Oil spills endanger public health, impact drinking water, devastate natural resources, and disrupt the economy. Every effort must be made to prevent oil spills and to clean them up promptly once they occur. The purpose of the Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) rule is to help facilities and farms prevent a discharge of oil into navigable waters or adjoining shorelines.
The SPCC rule requires farms and other facilities to develop, maintain, and implement an oil spill prevention plan, called an SPCC Plan. These plans help farms prevent oil spills, as well as control a spill should one occur. If you have additional questions about the SPCC program, please call our Oil Information Center at (800) 424-9346.
- Updates - Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA)
- SPCC Basics
- Create Your SPCC Plan
- Additional Information and Resources
WRRDA directed EPA to conduct a study to determine the appropriate applicability threshold for farms, based on a significant risk of discharge to water. EPA consulted with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to gather the most recent and complete information about the characteristics of farms, particularly with regard to oil storage.
EPA expects to promulgate a rule amending the SPCC requirements associated with the applicability thresholds and other WRRDA amendments.
Oil Storage on U.S. Farms: Risks and Opportunities for Protecting Surface Waters
Farms and WRRDA
WRRDA was signed into law by the President on June 10, 2014. Section 1049 of the Act changes certain applicability provisions of the SPCC rule for farms, and modifies the criteria under which a farmer may self-certify an SPCC Plan.
New Farms Fact Sheet Explaining the Impact of the WRRDA on the SPCC rule
- SPCC: Easy as 1-2-3 provides a quick guide to SPCC applicability and determining if you need to create a full SPCC Plan or use the SPCC Plan Template.
- A Facility Owner/Operator’s Guide to Oil Pollution Prevention
- SPCC Farms Fact Sheet provides a brief overview of the SPCC program as it relates to farms. Note: This SPCC fact sheet is currently out of date. Please see the new WRRDA fact sheet for updated information on changes to farm SPCC applicability and the self-certification criteria.
- SPCC Presentation provides a more in depth look at the SPCC program.
- Fact Sheet: Oil Discharge Reporting Requirements
- Milk Exemption under the SPCC Rule
- Fact Sheet: SPCC Compliance Date Extension for Farms
- SPCC Train the Trainer for Agriculture provides organizations with materials to hold trainings to raise awareness of the SPCC rule and the upcoming compliance date within the farming community.
- Frequent SPCC Questions for Farms
Create Your SPCC Plan
A number of resources are available to help farms create their SPCC Plan.
- The Tier I Template is intended to help the owner or operator of a Tier I qualified facility develop a self-certified SPCC Plan. See also: Is My Facility a "Qualified Facility" under the SPCC Rule?
- Example Tier I Qualified Facility SPCC Plan - this example plan, based on a farm scenario, will guide you through creating your own self-certified SPCC Plan.
- How to Fill Out a Tier I Template - this presentation walks you through how to fill out a Tier I Template using the example Tier I Qualified Facility SPCC Plan above.
- Secondary Containment Calculation Worksheets - example and blank worksheets used to calculate secondary containment capacity are available to help you to comply with the secondary containment requirements of the SPCC rule.
- mySPCC Exit - a suite of compliance assistance tools has been specifically developed to provide agricultural retailers with industry-standard information to assist in the preparation of an SPCC Plan for their facility. Sponsored by The Fertilizer Institute and was developed cooperatively with the Asmark Institute and EPA.
- State Professional Engineer (PE) licensing board contacts - this list will help you contact your state licensing board, which can then help you locate a PE should your plan require one.
- EPA contacts should you need further assistance.
- National Agriculture Center is the "first stop" for information about environmental requirements that affect the agricultural community. The Ag Center was created by EPA with the support of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Additional Information and Resources
- North Dakota State University’s Water Quality Page Exit– this website is dedicated to providing useful materials to assist the agriculture community with the SPCC rule specific to North Dakota.
- Purdue University’s "Aboveground Petroleum Tanks" (PDF) (110 pp, 36 M, About PDF) Exit– this guide provides a comprehensive review of requirements related to small aboveground storage tanks, with specific examples.