MADISON, Wis. (Legal Newsline) - Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen announced a $51,470.75 judgment Monday against a Milwaukee County gas station owner for allegedly violating state environmental laws.
Bulk Petroleum Corporation allegedly violated laws regulating the maintenance of underground storage tanks, proper abandonment of unused tanks and handling or use of combustable or flammable liquids. Bulk Petroleum failed to obtain a valid operation permit for three tanks located at an out-of-service gas station in Milwaukee. After state regulators issued two state orders against Bulk Petroleum requiring it to obtain an operation permit for each tank, Bulk Petroleum allegedly failed to comply with either order.
In addition to paying $51,470.75 in court costs, forfeitures and surcharges, Bulk Petroleum must also obtain an operation permit for each tank or permanently close each tank at the site. If Bulk Petroleum does not comply with the requirement, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is authorized to enter the site, contract to remove noncompliant tanks and place a lien on the property to cover the cost of permanently closing the tank.
Laws regulating the maintenance of underground storage tanks are meant to protect state waters from harm due to contamination from tank liquids. Soil contaminated with petroleum products can contaminate groundwater. The contaminated water may then emit petroleum vapors into nearby basements.