International Liquid Terminals Association > Advocacy > Issues and Policy
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Issues & Policy

ILTA provides a strong voice in Washington and serves as the leading trade association advocating on behalf of the terminal industry. Terminals are heavily regulated, so ILTA’s portfolio is broad. By working with our members and other trade associations, we identify legislation and proposed regulations that impact the industry and educate key decision makers on relevant policy matters.

Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorist Standard (CFATS)

In 2007, the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program was created to help prevent terrorist attacks on high-risk chemical facilities. CFATS requires covered chemical facilities to prepare Security Vulnerability Assessments and implement Site Security Plans that must satisfy the risk-based performance standards outlined in the rule. As a result, ILTA submitted a Petition for Declaratory Order to DHS in 2009, requesting that gasoline be declared exempt from CFATS. In July 2016, DHS issued clarifying guidance, but not a final regulation, which indefinitely suspended the due date for gasoline terminals to report chemicals of interest in gasoline mixtures.

As of July 2023, Congress allowed funding and authorization of the CFATS program to lapse, leaving a regulatory gap in terminal facility oversight. There is no clear indication on when or if Congress will look to reauthorize CFATS, but ILTA nonetheless has continued to argue the program's importance on both Capitol Hill and to DHS.

Coast Guard Regulations

The U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) is responsible for Ship and Port Facility safety and security through several authorizing laws. USCG is the primary federal response agency for releases of chemicals to waters. USCG also regulates safety and security at U.S. facilities involved in maritime transportation. ILTA has long engaged in policy and regulatory issues with the Coast Guard, including the use of Transportation Worker Identification Credentials at Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA)-regulated facilities.

Most recently, the U.S. Coast Guard announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in February 2024 entitled, "Cybersecurity in the Maritime Transportation System."

USCG proposes updating its maritime security regulations by adding language provisions to establish minimum cybersecurity requirements for U.S.- flagged vessels, Outer Continental Shelf facilities, and U.S. facilities subject to the Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002 (MTSA). The intent is to address current and emerging cybersecurity threats in the marine transportation system (MTS).

ILTA has signed on with Nash Maritime Consulting to help lead a working group alongside AFPM in developing industry comments. Comments will be shared with membership ahead of an April 22, 2024, due date.

ILTA can continue to engage with the Coast Guard to represent the interests of the terminal industry and ensure that ILTA is recognized as a trusted, credible source. To maintain this engagement, ILTA could host the USCG on industry calls, invite the USCG to address the ILTA EHSS Committee, and have Coast Guard represented at our annual Conference and Trade Show.

Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) Reader Rule

In May 2022, the United States Coast Guard (USCG) attended the ILTA Operating Conference and Trade Show and announced that USCG was likely to issue a regulation delaying the implementation of the final TWIC Reader Rule.

In December 2022, ILTA advocated for legislation formally delaying the Reader Rule date from 2023 to 2026, effectively delivering a 3-year extension to the Final Reader Rule

Also in December 2022, USCG issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking requesting comments on a possible extension of the Final Reader Rule for at least 3 years to as many as 6 years. ILTA provided comments supporting a meaningful extension, if a more secure and cost-effective program could be developed as a result of the delay.

ILTA can continue to be engaged on this issue and advocate for a cost-effective program for its members.


Federal policy is increasingly focused on preserving the cybersecurity of critical infrastructure. Several government agencies, including the Department of Energy (DOE), the Department of Homeland Security (including the U.S. Coast Guard, the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) have jurisdiction in this area. Along with other agencies responsible for cybersecurity, the agencies coordinate activities under a cybersecurity framework published by the National Institutes of Standards and Technology.

ILTA advocacy in this area can seek to build upon other federal government efforts to engage private sector stakeholders to improve coordination between various Federal agencies engaged in cybersecurity policy and educate policymakers on the needs and circumstances of the terminal industry.

EPA Air Emissions Regulations (Gasoline Distribution)

In June 2022, pursuant to the Clean Air Act requirements for technology review, EPA stated a rulemaking impacting national emission standards for hazardous air pollutants for gasoline distribution facilities (Stage I) area source category. EPA proposed amendments to the National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) for Gasoline Distribution facilities and the Standards of Performance for Bulk Gasoline Terminals. EPA is proposing to revise NESHAP requirements for storage tanks, loading operations, and equipment leaks to reflect cost-effective developments in practices, process, or controls.

In the same rulemaking EPA is also proposing New Source Performance Standards to reflect best systems of emissions reduction for loading operations and equipment leaks. EPA is proposing revisions related to emissions during periods of startup, shutdown, and malfunction; to add requirements for electronic reporting of performance test results, performance evaluation reports, and compliance reports; to revise monitoring and operating requirements for control devices; and to make other minor technical improvements. In November 2022, EPA proposed including optical gas imaging to Appendix K, to use thermal camera imaging to reduce emissions, especially methane emissions.

This rulemaking responds to Clean Air Act requirements for review of existing technology-based emissions standards at least every eight years, and for updates to those standards if warranted by advances in technology, industry practices, or the cost effectiveness of controls. The proposed rule results from EPA's assessment of three technology-based standards that apply to the Gasoline Distribution source category:

Subpart R, the NESHAP applicable to bulk gasoline terminals that are major sources of hazardous air pollutants ("HAPs"); Subpart BBBBBB ("6B"), the NESHAP applicable to smaller but more numerous area source bulk gasoline terminals; and Subpart XX, the New Source Performance Standard ("NSPS") that applies to new, modified and reconstructed bulk gasoline terminals.

ILTA submitted a formal letter to EPA on the costs of tank degassing based on their thenprospective rule back in September 2023, as well as comments on the proposed rule back in December.

Going forward, ILTA will be looking to submit another round of comments on the rule when it is published. ILTA has a standing working group dedicated to the issue and works with long-time industry partner Trinity Consultants, who will be in charge of leading the draŌing.

2024-0308 Part 60 Appendix K Final Rule Only (11 Pages)

2024-0308 Part 60 Appendix K Final Rule (408 pages)

EPA’s main rule page for the Gasoline Distribution rulemaking link.

  • This page is where EPA posts updates about subparts R and BBBBBB, and the combined final pre-publication rule text, including subpart XXa, is posted.

Final pre-publication rule text (dated Feb 29, posted Mar 14): 

  • This link appears on the above EPA page as the most recent link under “Rule History.”

The link to view the docket for the rule.

  • This link format will show the docket’s list of documents, sorted by date posted.  As you can see, there are no “Final Rule” documents or documents dated 2024. In the pre-publication rule preamble, EPA says they will post a fuller response to comments, including ours, into this docket.



Recent information indicates that per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances also known as PFAS are detrimental to the environment and human health. U.S. EPA and many states have begun regulating PFAS, especially related to discharges as an environmental contaminant.

PFAS is a key ingredient in liquid terminal firefighting foams, specifically, aqueous film forming foams (AFFF). ILTA member facilities, long required by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and other standards, used AFFF foams many being PFAS-based.

U.S. EPA and Congress are developing policy with the goal of regulating and removing PFAS from the environment. Policymakers are also looking at holding parties liable for adding PFAS to the environment. EPA's policy action is evaluating whether to include PFAS as a hazardous contaminant under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA or "Superfund"). If included as a hazardous contaminant, property owners and purchasers might be responsible for clean-up and remediation costs, including possibly for past property ownership and past pollution.

Given the patchwork of State laws and timelines to address PFAS, ILTA is working to set an achievable, pragmatic timeline for a national phase-out of PFAS-based firefighting foams at liquid terminals, providing time for terminal operators to re-engineer and replace fire suppression systems. By providing a pragmatic timeline and model for states to coordinate in phasing-out AFFF use at liquid terminals an essential step to enable mutual aid across state lines during large scale fire events.

To that end, ILTA has worked for the last year alongside the International Association of Firefighters (IAFF) and the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) to develop the Protecting Emergency Responders from Exposure to Chemicals & Toxins (PERFECT) Act. The bill:

  • Provides a national timeline of seven years for a transition to alternative, non-PFAS foams
  • Ends the manufacture and sale of firefighting foams with intentionally added PFAS
  • Phases out the use of firefighting foams with intentionally added PFAS, with extra transition time given to terminals and oil refineries
  • Creates a take-back program for foam manufacturers to take back foams from customers and safely store the while EPA-approved disposal methods for PFAS are determined
  • Requires foam manufacturers to refund public sector entities for the costs of PFAS foams
  • Requires firefighting equipment manufacturers to label gear to notify users of PFAS exists in the equipment
Permitting Reform

Senator Joe Manchin III, Chairman of the Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee, led an effort to implement significant federal permitting reform in several key areas of interest to ILTA members. Some of the key aspects of the proposed reforms are: (1) Reforming the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) compliance and challenges, differentiating between large significant projects and lesser regionally significant projects; (2) limiting litigation for select significant projects; (3) creating a national list of differing types of energy infrastructure projects; and (4) adjusting the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), amongst other objectives.

This reform effort would lead to potential impact for ILTA members as they undertake new projects to expand or increase capacity or replace infrastructure. Agencies that would be impacted are Department of Interior, EPA, FERC, and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Permitting processes are often subject to lengthy delays because of the sometimes overlapping and opaque authority of multiple government regulators. ILTA can work with other stakeholders to continue advancing these reforms.

Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) Regulations

OSHA has longstanding engagement with the terminal industry through OSHA's Process Safety Management (PSM) rule and EPA's Risk Management Program (RMP) both impose process safety requirements to protect workers and prevent releases at facilities that store threshold amounts of certain hazardous chemicals.

OSHA's heat exposure and worker protection programs are critical to the operation of the terminal industry. Worker protections remain a focus for OSHA and the Biden Administration. On July 2023, the Biden Administration announced action to be taken by OSHA to address climate change impacted worker protection regulations. The specific action is focused on reducing heat related deaths and injuries for workers.

The status of OSHA's "atmospheric tank" exception via possible PSM regulatory changes remains critical to ILTA members. ILTA can continue to be engaged in workplace safety, PSM, and other regulations while advocating on behalf of terminal members. ILTA can continue to work with EPA and OSHA to pursue reasonable and cost-effective measures that are effective at protecting workers and the environment.

FDA Regulations

In July 2019, FDA's Intentional Adulteration final rule, aimed at mitigating cases of intentional tampering with food products went into effect.

In August 2020, ILTA and its members submitted comments largely supporting the FDA's 2019 Mitigation Strategies to Protect Food Against Intentional Adulteration. In March 2022, FDA issued a final regulation, and established an Intentional Adulteration Subcommittee with the Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance to develop food defense training resources for industry and regulators alike. ILTA can participate in this Subcommittee and continue its advocacy on food related issues.

Federal Railroad Administration

ILTA could become more involved in Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) regulations. FRA's jurisdiction applies in terminal operator's railyards for inspections of rail cars prior to leaving. FRA and PHMSA are also responsible for tanker car and hazmat safety and made changes to tanker car specifications in response to increases in rail shipments of crude and ethanol. ILTA hosted a speaker from FRA at its Spring 2023 EHSS Committee Meeting in Savannah, Georgia.


Surface Transportation Board - Rail Issues

In April 2022, ILTA continued its advocacy efforts against the Class 1 Railroad practice of Precision Scheduled Railroading (PSR). In this endeavor, ILTA went to the Surface Transportation Board (STB) along with other shippers and rail customers to express grave concerns about the inability for ILTA members to meet customers' demands and meet safe operations, due to PSR and the negative impacts on the rail industry.

ILTA can continue its advocacy efforts and couple those efforts with increased engagement with FRA and STB staff and STB members.