Statutes and Rules

Link to Final Published UST Rules located at Montana, Secretary of State website.

State statutory authority for the program is found in the Montana Underground Storage Tank Act, 75-11-501 MCA and Montana UST Installer and Inspector Licensing and Permitting Act, 75-11-201 MCA. The program's Administrative Rules are found in Title 17, Chapter 56 of the Montana Administrative Rules (ARM). These rules are similar to the federal EPA rules, 40 CFR, Part 280, and outline the specifications of UST system construction, design, operation, repair and closure. They also include the requirements for tank notification, release detection, environmental closure assessment, leak response and corrective action. Montana statutes cover additional classes of USTs which are not federally regulated. These classes include some tanks used for storing heating oil for consumptive use on the premise where stored, and underground piping connected to aboveground tanks.

  • Proposed changes to the Underground Storage Tank rules - Redlined
  • EPA Reauthorized Montana’s UST Program   

    The EPA has approved the Montana Department of Environmental Quality Underground Storage Tank (UST) program. EPA has published in the federal register both a Proposed Rule and a Direct Final Rule Federal Register (FR) notice on August 15, 2019. The purpose of these FR notices is to propose and then finalize the EPA’s reauthorization of the state of Montana’s UST Program.

    Both FR notices can be reviewed at or going to and then searching for docket EPA-R08-UST-2018-0827.

    TIMING: The Proposed Rule provided a 30-day comment period from the date of publication. Since the EPA did not receive relevant adverse comment within this comment period, the rule became effective 60-days after the publication of the Direct Final Rule. 

    BACKGROUND: Subtitle I of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) of 1976, 42 U.S.C. § 6901 et seq., which amended the Solid Waste Disposal Act (SWDA), revisions were effective October 13, 2015. The implementing regulations found at 40 CFR Part 280 set minimum standards for new tanks and require owners and operators of existing tanks to upgrade, replace, or close them. The UST regulations also require owners and operators to monitor their UST systems for releases and maintain financial assurance for petroleum USTs.

    In accordance with 40 CFR Part 281, a state may apply for SPA any time after the promulgation of new federal rules. In 2015, the EPA published substantial revisions to the federal UST regulations. These revisions strengthened the 1988 federal UST regulations by increasing emphasis on properly operating and maintaining UST equipment, among other things. The EPA originally authorized Montana’s UST program, based on the State’s November 23, 1989 regulations, on February 1, 1996 (61 FR 3599; effective March 4, 1996). Montana submitted revisions to its UST program based on the federal EPAct regulatory revisions in an official authorization package dated November 13, 2018 and received by EPA on December 3, 2018.