The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation has opened its public comment period for proposed changes to oil spill prevention and response regulations.
The Department has identified 32 sections for possible change in Section 18 of the Alaska Administrative Code dealing with oil spill response and prevention measures, including Contingency Plans, or C-Plans. ADEC began this process in October 2019 and opened an initial public comment period in 2020 that yielded 350 comments which can be viewed here.
CIRCAC has remained consistent in its position that any changes to the regulations should only strengthen existing protections. These regulations have been refined over the course of three decades, with input from the public and industry, leading to a comprehensive suite of regulations that have proven effective at preventing large scale spills and providing effective guidance and response strategies for other releases.
ADEC has announced a 90-day comment period for its proposed changes, ending on January 31, 2022. CIRCAC staff will review those changes and work with our committees to provide comments to the Department, again, focusing on the need to strengthen the existing protections and encourage only those changes that will enhance and improve oil spill prevention and response measures.