Bill Summary for H 639 (2015-2016)

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Summary date: 

Apr 15 2015

Bill Information:

View NCGA Bill Details2015-2016 Session
House Bill 639 (Public) Filed Monday, April 13, 2015
Intro. by Millis.

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Bill summary

Renames Part 8 of Article 9 of GS Chapter 130A as Risk-Based Environmental Remediation of Sites (was, of Industrial Sites). Makes the following additional changes to Part 8. Removes references to contaminated industrial sites throughout the Part and instead makes the Part applicable to contaminated sites, defined as any real property that is contaminated and may be subject to remediation under any of the programs or requirements set out in GS 130A-310.67(a). Adds and defines the terms adjacent property and contaminated adjacent property. Provides that the Part also does not apply to leaking petroleum aboveground storage tanks and other sources of petroleum releases governed by new Part 7, or to the Coal Ash Management Act of 2014. Removes the provision limiting the application of the Part to sites where a discharge, spill, or release was reported before March 1, 2011. Allows the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (Department), when deciding whether a proposed remedial action plan provides for the imposition and maintenance of engineering and institutional controls and for sampling, monitoring, and reporting requirements necessary to protect public health, safety, and welfare and the environment, to rely on other state or local land use controls. Provides that a person conducting remediation may not demonstrate attainment of a remediation standard by using institutional controls that result in an incompatible use of the property in relation to the surround land uses. 

Enacts new GS 130A-310.73A allowing contaminated sites where contamination has migrated to adjacent properties to be remediated according to Part 8 if (1) the person who proposes to conduct the remediation remediates the contaminated adjacent property to unrestricted use standards or (2) the person who proposes to conduct the remediation provides the owner of the contaminated adjacent property with a copy of Part 8 and the publication produced by the Department and gets written consent from the owner of the contaminated adjacent property for the person to remediate the contaminated adjacent property using site‑specific remediation standards. Requires the Department, in consultation with specified entities, to develop a publication with information about risk-based remediation. Makes conforming changes.

Allows the Department to approve the use of a registered environmental consultant to provide oversight for the assessment and remediation of a site based on the risk posed by the site and the availability of Department staff for oversight.

Amends GS 130A-310.76 to establish the Risk-Based Remediation Fund, with funds being used to (1) pay for administrative and operating expenses, including the full cost of the Department's activities associated with any human health or ecological risk assessments, groundwater modeling, financial assurance matters, or community outreach and (2) establish, administer, and maintain a system for the tracking of land‑use restrictions recorded at sites that are remediated under this Part. Adds reporting requirements. 

Enacts a new Part 7, Risk-Based Remediation for Petroleum Releases from Aboveground Storage Tanks and Other Sources, in Article 21A of GS Chapter 143. States legislative findings and intent. Requires the Environmental Management Commission (EMC) to adopt rules establishing a risk-based approach for the cleanup of discharges and releases of petroleum from aboveground storage tanks and other sources. Specifies minimum requirements for the rules.  Provides that if the EMC concludes that a discharge or release poses a degree of risk to human health or the environment that is no greater than the acceptable level of risk established by the EMC, the EMC must notify an owner, operator, or landowner who provides the information required under the statute that no cleanup, further cleanup, or further action will be required unless the EMC later determines that the discharge or release poses an unacceptable level of risk or a potentially unacceptable level of risk. Provides that when the EMC concludes that a discharge or release poses a degree of risk to human health or the environment that requires further cleanup, the EMC must provide notification to the owner, operator, or landowner who provides the information required by the statute of the cleanup method approved by the EMC. Sets out the requirements to be met for the remediation of sites with off‑site migration. Provides that the statute applies to discharges of petroleum from aboveground storage tanks and other sources not otherwise governed by GS 143‑215.94V.

Repeals GS 130A-310.10(a)(8a), which required that the annual report on inactive hazardous sites include the amounts and sources of funds collected by year received under GS 130A-310.76, the amounts and sources of those funds paid into the Inactive Hazardous Sites Cleanup Fund, the number of acres of contamination for which funds have been received, and a detailed annual accounting of how the funds have been used by the Department to advance the purposes of Part 8.