If you store any kind of biofuels on your premises you may need to comply with regulations controlling how you store it. Storing your biofuels responsibly will reduce the risk of causing pollution and help you avoid prosecution or a fine.

Comply with storage regulations

You must store biofuels and all liquid wastes, such as used cooking oils, securely:

  • in containers that are strong enough and unlikely to burst or leak
  • within a suitable secondary containment system, eg a bund or drip tray, which must be able to contain any liquid that escapes.

See our guide Oil Storage

You may also need a waste management licence to store waste cooking oil. See the page in this guideline: Do you need a permit or licence to produce biofuel?

In Scotland, register an exemption to make biodiesel

You must register an exemption from waste management licensing for certain activities, such as, in some conditions, to produce biofuel or store products used in its manufacture. See the page in this guideline: Do you need a permit or licence to produce biofuel?

Meet Control of Major Accident Hazards (COMAH) Regulations

If you store large quantities of dangerous substances, for example materials used to make biofuels, check whether the COMAH Regulations affect you. COMAH may also affect your site if you store fuels, including gases like biomethane, over certain thresholds.

You may need a major accident prevention policy, have to submit a safety report and prepare an on-site emergency plan.

See our guide COMAH

Transport of biofuels

If you transport dangerous goods, such as fuel, you must comply with legal requirements regulated by the Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) or HSE in Scotland You must identify the hazards of the goods you intend to transport and meet further requirements for packaging, labelling and documentation.

Good practice

You should keep absorbent materials such as sand and other containment equipment suitable for the type and quantity of fuel and oil you store on your site. You can buy spill kits containing all the appropriate spill equipment for the materials you store. Keep them close to where you might need them, and make sure that staff know where they are and how to use them. Make sure you dispose of any wastes arising from spills, in an appropriate manner. 

Report pollution incidents as soon as they happen to the UK wide Pollution Hotline on Tel 0800 80 70 60.

Prepare a pollution incident response procedure for dealing with spills. Make sure that your staff are familiar with the procedure and know how to implement it.

GPP 21: Pollution incident response planning

Further information

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