Spill Management Regulations

Phase One

Division 2.1 Spill Preparedness, Response and Recovery of the Environmental Management Act (EMA) came into force on October 30, 2017 with the approval of the following three phase one regulations under it:

Division 2.1 and the phase one regulations set a foundation for strengthening spill preparedness, response and recovery in B.C.

  • Preparedness: Regulated persons have been identified as transporters of liquid petroleum products. The owners of ministry regulated pipelines transporting any amount of liquid petroleum products are regulated persons, as are the owners of rail and highway transporters in possession of 10,000 liters or more. To demonstrate preparedness, regulated persons are required to develop and test provincial spill contingency plans.
  • Response and recovery: A responsible person is someone who has possession, charge or control of a substance or thing when a spill of the substance or thing occurs or is at imminent risk of occurring. Responsible persons will be required to meet enhanced spill reporting requirements, carry out all the response actions specified in the EMA as well as any additional steps required by a director, and, if directed to do so, develop and implement a recovery plan that addresses any damage done to the environment.
  • Summary of the new regulation requirements (PDF)

Fact Sheets for Phase One Spill Regulations

Fact Sheets to assist in understanding requirements:

Guidance for Phase One Spill Regulations

Detailed Guidance to assist in meeting requirements:

Phase Two

Phase two regulations are now being developed. New requirements call for timely responses following a spill, and the development of Geographic Response Plans (GRPs) to consider the unique characteristics of an area. For information on the engagement and development of these regulations, visit our Spill Management Engagement page.

Note: Fact sheets and guidance documents have been prepared to assist in understanding new phase one requirements, and are being developed for phase two. It is the responsibility of regulated persons, responsible persons and the owners of substances or things to understand and comply with the Environmental Management Act and its associated regulations. 

Fact sheets and guidance documents are solely for the convenience of the reader and are intended to assist in understanding the legislation and regulations, not replace them. They do not contain and should not be construed as legal advice. Current legislation and regulations should be consulted for complete information.