Underground Oil Tank Removal

The City is no longer involved in the regulation of oil tanks

Effective October 1, 2018, the City of North Vancouver will no longer be involved in the regulation of oil tanks.  Individuals and developers will need to manage their own liability and exposure by following the BC provincial regulations. See regulations.

Years ago, homes were often heated with heating oil, and many City of North Vancouver homes built between the 1920’s and the 1960’s had fuel storage tanks buried close to their foundations.  Fuel tanks are no longer in use, but homeowners may not know that a tank is on their property.  If you have one it is important that you have it removed.

Signs of a fuel tank

  • A filler pipe protruding from the ground
  • A vent pipe at the side of your house
  • A metal pipe cap close to your front or backyard
  • A sunken area on your lawn

Why you should remove an underground fuel tank

Underground fuel tanks present significant potential for environmental contamination.  If a tank on your property leaks oil, you could be liable for damages.  A fuel tank on your property can also complicate real estate transactions and may restrict your insurance coverage. 

Steps to ensure your property is free of fuel tanks

  1. Have your property surveyed by an environmental consultant.To locate a provider, search online for a fuel tank environmental consultant in BC.

    You can also check with the City of North Vancouver Fire Department to see if there are any reports registered to your property relating to fuel tanks by calling 604-980-5021 or by emailing the fire department at fire@cnv.org.  Please note: Reports have only been maintained until September 30, 2018.

  2. If a fuel tank is located, you will need to hire a qualified environmental consultant or engineer to work alongside the professional oil tank contractor.Once the tank is removed, the environmental consultant will take soil samples to ensure it is not contaminated.
  3. If necessary, report leaks and spills.Provincial law requires that you, your contractor and/or the professional engineer report certain petroleum releases, or threats of release, to the local fire department (City of North Vancouver) and the BC Ministry of Environment (depending on the nature and volume of the release, as well as contamination levels).
  4. Retain copies of all records as you may be asked to produce them later if you sell your property, obtain financing, renew your home insurance or file a claim.
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