Environmental Review

The Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA) Environmental Review Department helps promote safe fuel storage and protect the environment.

As part of the Fuels Safety Program, the Technical Standards and Safety Authority’s (TSSA) environmental review process promotes the safe handling and storage of fuels. It ensures that actions dealing with a fuel leak or spill comply with proven and effective environmental requirements while facilities are active and operating.    

TSSA administers the Environmental Management Protocol that outlines the reporting, assessment, and management of contaminants that have escaped into the environment.

Environmental Management Protocol 

Ontario's Liquid Fuels Handling Code (LFHC) and the Fuel Oil Code (FOC) require compliance with the Environmental Management Protocol for Fuel Handling Sites in Ontario (pdf).      

The Protocol applies only to operations governed by the Technical Standards and Safety Act, 2000 and the following codes and regulations:    

Environmental Assessment Requirements to Abandon Underground Fuel Storage Tanks

An underground storage tank must be removed within two years of disuse under the Liquid Fuels Handling Code (LFHC), and within three years of disuse under the Fuel Oil Code (FOC).

The Fuels Safety Program may consider deviations from this requirement. You must apply to seek a variance from this code requirement and provide an Environmental Assessment Report. Please see Advisory FS-175-10 R1 (pdf) for further guidance.     

Environmental assessment report and ERS application process

The owner or operator of a fuel storage facility must submit an Environmental Assessment Report, as required by TSSA’s Environmental Management Protocol (pdf), in the event of:

  • A fuel spill or leak

  • The discovery of petroleum-related impacts

  • The removal of a tank or site closure, or

  • A TSSA Inspection Order for an Environmental Assessment Report.    

The environmental assessment report must be completed by a “Qualified Person,” as defined in O. Reg 153/04: Records of Site Condition - Part XV.1 of the Act.

The completed environmental assessment report must be submitted to TSSA along with a completed Environmental Review Services (ERS) application form (pdf).    

For help with the submission process, please contact TSSA’s Customer Service Centre at toll-free 1-877-682-8772 or email customerservices@tssa.org.