On Aug. 25, 2011, the Environmental Quality Commission approved the repeal of the UST Soil Matrix Licensing Rules (Chapter 340, Division 162.) The repeal became effective on Sept. 1, 2011.


In 1989, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality adopted Soil Matrix Cleanup rules (OAR 340-122-320 through 340-122-0335) to address simple underground storage tank cleanups at regulated UST sites where groundwater was not affected.

At that time, DEQ recognized the need to license businesses and individuals who performed these simple cleanups as soil sampling requirements were new. The removal and decommissioning of USTs was traditionally performed by excavation contractors who were unfamiliar with the new environmental regulations. Prior to the Soil Matrix rules, it was common for contractors removing tanks to simply dig up contaminated soil around the tanks until they could no longer see or smell it. To protect both the environment and the health and safety of the contractors, DEQ developed its soil matrix registration and licensing program.


What types of licenses were issued for Soil Matrix Cleanups?

In 1990, DEQ adopted Division 162, Registration and Licensing Requirements for Underground Storage Tank Soil Matrix Cleanup Service Providers and Supervisors.

The UST Soil Matrix Cleanup Service Provider License was for businesses performing soil matrix cleanup services at regulated tank sites. The license fee was $600 for a two-year license.

The UST Soil Matrix Cleanup Supervisor License was for individuals performing soil matrix cleanups. Supervisors demonstrated their knowledge of the rules by passing a qualifying examination given by the International Code Council through a professional testing company. The examination cost $70; the license fee for a two-year license was $150.