Matt Dempsey (202) 224-9797

Katie Brown (202) 224-2160          


Successful Bipartisan Effort Delaying SPCC Rule a Win for Farmers

Inhofe Says SPCC Delay Example of Bipartisan Senate Oversight  

Washington, D.C. - Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, today welcomed a delay by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the implementation of the amended Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasure (SPCC) rule. The announcement that EPA will be extending the SPCC compliance date to May 10, 2013 was quietly posted last week on EPA's website found at In June, Senator Inhofe and 32 Senators joined to send a bipartisan letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson requesting that EPA extend the implementation timeline for the amended SPCC rule for farmers, and work to ensure that the rule is not overly burdensome or confusing.

"Thanks to strong bipartisan oversight in the United States Senate, we were successful in delaying the implementation of SPCC," Senator Inhofe said. "Without the delay, a significant number of farmers would have been harmed by this rule. I will continue to monitor EPA's work on SPCC to ensure that farmers are not overly burdened by unnecessary regulations. 

"From greenhouse gas regulations to the EPA's train wreck rules for industrial boilers, a bipartisan majority in the United States Senate continues to express deep reservations about the overregulation of the Obama-EPA.  We agree that we must build on the environmental progress our nation has made, but we must do so in a way that balances the growing needs of a weak economy. Our bipartisan effort on the SPCC rule is a clear example of what is possible, and I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to build on this success.  If we are serious about creating jobs and growing our economy in a bipartisan fashion, reining in the EPA is the best place to start."

Background on SPCC Rule

In an effort to prevent oil spills, EPA requires that certain facilities develop and implement oil spill prevention, control, and countermeasures.  It's common practice for farms and ranches to have fuel storage tanks and containers.  The SPCC program calls for farmers and other facilities to have an oil spill prevention plan to avoid spills and effective secondary containment, such as a double-walled tank, a dike or a remote impoundment that must be able to hold the full capacity of the container plus possible rainfall.  The rule also requires secondary containment for the refueling of tanks.  

Last year, the EPA proposed extending the compliance date under the SPCC rule to November of 2011 and only for farms that came into business after August of 2002.  Last week, EPA announced that the Agency will extend the SPCC compliance date to May 10, 2013.