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Closures

​The goal of Closure oversight is to ensure that the hazardous materials in facilities undergoing closure are transported, disposed of, or reused in a matter which eliminates the need for further maintenance and any threat to public health and safety or ​the environment. This is accomplished by a Hazardous Materials Specialist evaluating all submitted closure documents, determining if the facility is subject to Closure oversight, conducting inspections, and guiding businesses throughout the entire process by providing information on permits, fees, and other requirements.

Authority

Aboveground Tank & Hazardous Materials Storage Facility Closure
 
Tiered Permitting Closure
 
Underground Storage Tank Closure
 
Applicability

HMCD has oversight over Aboveground Tank & Hazardous Materials Storage Facility Closures within the cities of Los Altos Hills, Monte Sereno, Saratoga, and unincorporated areas of Santa Clara County (including Moffett Field, San Martin, and Stanford). 
 
HMCD has oversight over Tiered Permitting Closures in all areas of Santa Clara County except within the cities of Santa Clara, Gilroy, Sunnyvale, and Mountain View.
 
HMCD has oversight over Underground Storage Tank Closures in Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Monte Sereno, Morgan Hill, Saratoga, Palo Alto, San Jose, and unincorporated areas of Santa Clara County (including Moffett Field, San Martin, and Stanford). 
 
In addition, HMCD handles County-owned or County-operated facilities regardless of location.

General Requirements

Aboveground Tank & Hazardous Materials Storage Facility Closure
 
  • If you are closing (i.e., demolishing, removing, or abandoning) an aboveground tank that previously held a hazardous material, you must complete and submit an Aboveground Tank System Closure Permit Application, along with payment for the permit fee. 
  • If you are closing (i.e., demolishing, removing, or abandoning) a facility or portion of a facility where hazardous materials are stored, you may be required to obtain a permit issued by HMCD. To apply for a permit prior to closure, please complete and submit an Aboveground Hazardous Materials Storage Facility Closure Application. HMCD will review the application, determine if a closure permit is required, and notify you of any applicable fees that must be paid.
  • A completed closure application must be submitted and approved prior to the start of closure activities, and closure permits expire six months after approval of the application.
Tiered Permit Treatment Unit Closure
 
  • Conditionally Exempt (CE) tier: Facilities operating under this tier (CESQT, CESW, CE-CL, or CEL) are required only to close their facilities in a manner that minimizes further maintenance and removes all contaminants and residuals
  • Conditionally Authorized (CA) tier: Facilities operating under this tier must close their facilities to the same standard as CE-facilities (see above). Additionally, facilities must provide written notification to the CUPA once the closure has been completed.
  • Permit by Rule (PBR) tier: Facilities operating under this tier must close their facilities to the same standards as CE-facilities (see above) and their written closure plan. Additionally, facilities must complete and submit a PBR closure application at least 30 days prior to beginning closure activities. PBR facilities will be expected to close according to their closure plan, and will be required to submit a Professional Engineer signed certification attesting that the closure was completed in a manner that meets or exceeds regulatory requirements. 
Underground Storage Tank Closure
 
  • If you are planning to close an underground storage tank that previously held a hazardous material, you must complete and submit an Underground Storage Tank System Closure Permit Application, along with payment for the permit fee.
  • Closure generally consists of removing the tank(s) and ancillary equipment such as piping from the ground and soil sampling to ensure that there is no residual contamination resulting from the operation of the tank system.
  • Tanks and primary piping are expected to be managed as hazardous waste once they are removed, unless they are cleaned onsite  and certified as non-hazardous in accordance with California hazardous waste regulations (California Code of Regulations, Title 22, Division 4.5, Chapter 32).
  • Sampling of soil beneath all tanks will be required once the tank(s) are removed, as well as along piping runs. 
  • Tank and sump removal and sampling activities must be witnessed by a representative from HMCD. Please schedule closure inspections at least two (2) working days in advance.
  • Additional permits (i.e., demolition permits, electrical permits, plumbing permits, etc.) may be required by the Building Department or other state or federal agencies.
Guidance Documents

Forms
Fees

Permit fees are based on the type of closure to be performed. For information on Closure Fees, please click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you would like answers to frequently asked questions about closures, click here.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Last updated: 12/11/2017 8:46 AM