The following Environment guidance note Produced in partnership with EDIA Environmental Insurance provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
From a peak of 39,958 in the late 1960s, there are now around 8,400 petrol forecourts in the UK.
When considering any environmental liability associated with petrol stations, consideration should be given to those locations that are:
forecourts due to close and be redeveloped, and
closed forecourts that were redeveloped in the past
Given their location (often) in town centres, redevelopment is often completed for residential end use.
Although forecourts sell fuel from the oil majors, the businesses themselves are owned by smaller entities. The improvement in land value associated with redevelopment has driven the closure of many petrol stations, especially as small businesses operating them have found it hard to remain profitable.
Petrol stations have the potential to cause environmental damage from:
the leakage of fuel from underground storage tanks (USTs) and the associated pipeline system to the pumps
leakage from drainage systems, surface run off of spills or the poor performance of drainage interceptors, and
vapours from loading of fuel tanks—in 2004 a study concluded that there was a quadrupled incidence of leukemia in children living near petrol stations
USTs are of particular concern to the environment, for the following reasons:
as they are located underground and made of metal, they are subject to corrosion
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