Many states, as well as the federal government, have reporting thresholds for spills of petroleum or other hazardous substances. This means that small spills, less than those thresholds, do not require reporting to the applicable agency. Not Connecticut. Our release reporting statute has no minimums, and requires reporting within 2 hours of when “person in charge” of a facility or vehicle becomes aware of the release. That should change soon. Public Act 16-199, An Act Modifying the Standard for Mandatory Reporting of Environmental Spills, requires the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection to adopt regulations to “define the threshold amounts for discharges, spillages, uncontrolled losses, seepages or filtrations that shall be reported to the commissioner pursuant to this section.” It further states that the regulations may also include the specification of any facts to be included in a report to the CT DEEP.
There is no deadline for CT DEEP to adopt these regulations, and spill regulations have been attempted previously. Let’s hope the change in the statute forces the issue.