Environmental Releases & Investigations
Any spill or discharge of waste which may cause
pollution of waters of the state must be reported immediately (NDAC
33-16-02.1-11 paragraph 4, bottom of page 22). The owner,
operator, or person responsible for a spill or discharge must notify the
department as soon as possible (1.701.328.5210) or the North Dakota hazardous
materials emergency assistance and spill reporting number (1.800.472.2121) and
provide all relevant information about the spill. Depending on the severity of
the spill or accidental discharge, the department may require the owner or
Take immediate remedial measures;
Determine the extent of pollution to waters of the
Provide alternate water sources to water users impacted
by the spill or accidental discharge; or
Any other actions necessary to protect human health and
Non-emergency releases may be reported by filling
out the online
Environmental Incident Report Form.
Specific minimum quantities for mandatory reporting of spills have not
been established. All spills which may potentially impact waters of the state,
either surface water or ground water, must be reported. This includes
all substances, not just "hazardous materials." Recent
examples that a person may not normally think of as having a
potential impact to water, include "non toxic" substances such as molasses
or salt. These may not be immediately harmful to human health, but
they may impact aquatic life or soil fertility.
Some releases may require immediate response by trained emergency
personnel. This will be coordinated through the Department of
Health, Division of Emergency Management and any other state or local
emergency response agencies that may be needed.
If there is any
question as to proper response call the Department of Health at
(1.701.328.5210) or the North Dakota hazardous materials emergency
assistance and spill reporting number (1.800.472.2121) and provide all
relevant information about the incident.
Investigation and Clean Up
Some releases may require additional investigation beyond initial clean up
to determine full impacts to the environment. This may include soil
borings and samples, monitoring wells and ground water samples, etc.
Investigations of Contaminant Release Sites (02/03 pdf format)
Environmental Site Investigation Report (11/02 pdf format)
Here for additional guidelines that may relate to environmental
investigations. These are found on the Division of Waste
Management web site.
Clean Up Standards
Action levels have been set for petroleum compounds and drinking water
maximum contaminant levels may also be used as action levels. Final
standards for cleanup are determined on a case-by-case basis, depending on
the contaminant involved and potential for risk to human health and the
Cleanup Action Levels for Gasoline and Other Petroleum Hydrocarbons
Property Transfer Assessments
If any type of soil or water contamination is found during a property
transfer assessment, or in the course of any other activity, that
contamination must be reported to the Department of Health. The fact
that it may have been a previously unknown, or historic release does not
eliminate the reporting requirements.