Navy settles with EPA on Silverdale fuel tanks

The Environmental Protection Agency today announced that the Navy has reached a settlement for $161,000 after failing to monitor underground fuel tanks for leaks on its Silverdale Property.

“EPA is working hard to restore Puget Sound and fuel leaks near the shoreline could seriously set us back,” said Peter Contreras, Manager of the Ground Water Unit in EPA’s Seattle office. “Nearby communities also rely on groundwater for drinking water, so preventing releases protects both Puget Sound and public health.”

According to the EPA, the Navy has 53 underground tanks ranging in size from 170 to 45,000 gallons. Diesel, gas and use oil are stored there.

Violations occurred between 2006 and 2010 on 37 occasions for failing to provide proper leak detection, failing to provide alarms that precent delivery drivers from over filling the tanks.

Since the 2010 EPA inspection of the base, the Navy has corrected the violations. The Navy has agreed to provide EPA with documentation showing it is in compliance with proper monitoring.

Naval Base Kitsap Bremerton spokesperson Tom Danaher said that during the March 2010 inspection, monitoring systems were operating at all sites demonstrating that all tanks and piping were operating properly and no fuel or oil was being released to the environment. No leaks were reported, he said.

All equipment deficiencies noted by the EPA had passed previous inspection by Washington State Department of Ecology, Danaher said.

The Navy completed over $600,000 worth of projects on fueling systems since the EPA inspection The Navy upgraded tank monitoring systems for 15 tanks, installed new leak detection and overfill prevention equipment, upgraded pipeline monitoring for 5 tanks, installed 5 new fuel dispensers with remote leak monitoring, installed improved high level alarms, and installed 5 new mechanical pipeline leak detectors, Danaher said.




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