Permit & Notification Information for Existing Facilities

State of Tennessee Air Pollution Control Permit Options

All GDFs are required to obtain a TN Air Pollution Control permit. GDFs have the option of submitting a Notice of Intent for authorization through Permit-by-Rule or applying for a traditional permit. Information on Permit-by-Rule can be found on the Permit-by-Rule webpage. For a traditional permit, use the Facility Identification (APC 100) and Gasoline Dispensing Facility (APC 114) forms to apply for a permit. Information and forms for construction and operating permits can be found on the Air Quality Construction Permit web page and the Air Quality State Operating Permit web page. 

Permit-by-Rule Offers the Following Advantages:

  • Acts as both a Construction and Operating permit. This helps make the application process less complicated.
  • The application process time is reduced. A Notice of Intent can be submitted 7 days prior to construction.
  • There is no expiration date. If the rules change, notification will be sent out.
  • There are no application or emission fees.
  • Specific to GDFs, increases in throughput would not require a new Notice of Intent. An Initial Notification would be required.

The Division of Air Pollution Control implemented Permit-by-Rule for Gasoline Dispensing Facilities on August 15, 2017. This is an option for GDFs. If an existing GDF would prefer to be authorized through Permit-by-Rule rather than retain a traditional permit, they can submit a Notice of Intent. Once the Notice of Authorization has been received, the GDF can surrender their traditional permit by emailing with the following:

  • Facility Information
  • Owner Information
  • Notice of Authorization number
  • Number of the permit being surrendered
  • A statement that the GDF is surrendering the traditional permit after being authorized through Permit-by-Rule

Existing facilities that discover they have not applied for authorization through Permit-by-Rule or applied for a traditional permit should do so as soon as possible after finding the issue. They may be able to take advantage of the TDEC Self Disclosure Policy and submit a Request for Monetary Penalty Waiver.

Under Permit-by-Rule, no written permit will be issued. To assist GDFs in understanding the Air Pollution Control rules that affect their facility, a Compliance Guidance has been developed to help a GDF identify the requirements that affect them and how to comply. This guidance should also be beneficial for existing facilities if they have questions about how to comply with their Air Pollution Control permit.

Change in Ownership

If an existing GDF changes ownership, within 30 days of the change in ownership APC should be notified. This can be done by emailing with facility information and new owner information. Submitting a new Notice of Intent with just the owner information and noting that this is for a change in ownership would insure that all information needed is submitted.

Stage II Decommissioning

On July 14, 2016, the State of TN rule 1200-3-18-.24 was revised to be similar to the Federal GDF rule. For most existing facilities, there will be no change in their requirements. GDF within certain counties will still be required to install and maintain Stage I vapor recovery systems when they have an AMT of 10,000 gallons/month or greater. Existing Stage II systems should be decommissioned by July 14, 2019, using the Petroleum Equipment Institute (PEI) guidance, “Recommended Practices for Installation and Testing of Vapor Recovery Systems at Vehicle Fueling Sites, PEI/RP300-09”. No new Stage II vapor recovery systems should be installed.

For decommissioning notification, we will be applying Operational Flexibility as a standard method for GDFs to notify APC. There is not a standard form for this. Send a letter or email with the following information:

Location information of the facility
Contact information of the responsible or technical contact.
Change proposed (in this case, decommissioning of Stage II)
Date when decommissioning will occur
Pollutants emitted that are affected by the change (in this case, VOCs from gasoline vapor)
Applicable requirements (in this case, State of TN rules 1200-3-18-.24(2)(b-d))
And the statement that the change would not result in emissions exceeding the emissions allowable under their existing operating permit.

This notification would be required 7 days prior to the decommissioning as per Operational Flexibility found in 1200-3-02-.01(1)(aa)4 of the TN Air Pollution Control rules. Calculations of the emission change should not be required due to previous determination and calculations conducted by APC over the development of the rule change. This information should be sent via email or direct mail to the Division of Air Pollution Control. APC's email is APC's mailing address is:

Department of Environment and Conservation
Division of Air Pollution Control
William R. Snodgrass Tennessee Tower
312 Rosa L. Parks Avenue, 15th Floor
Nashville, TN 37243 

Initial Notification

An Initial Notification contains basic information about the GDF. It gives notice to the EPA and TN APC that the rule applies to the GDF. As new sources must meet all requirements upon startup, they should send in a Notification of Compliance Status rather than an Initial Notification.

Existing facilities would need to send in an Initial Notification if their throughput increases and they are affected by additional requirements. Existing facilities should send the Initial Notification to both the EPA Region IV office and TN APC within 120 days of their monthly throughput increasing to another of the levels. A Notification of Compliance Status report may be submitted instead of an Initial Notification if the facility meets all necessary requirements of the 6C rule. 

Certain Facilities Do Not Need to Send in an Initial Notification nor a Notification of Compliance Status:

  • Facilities with a throughput of less than 10,000 gallons.
  • Or a facility that is in compliance with the State of TN GDF rule.
  • Is meeting the control requirements contained in the 6C rule.

Notification of Compliance Status

Notification of Compliance Status report is a report giving basic information about the GDF and if it is meeting the necessary requirements. The report needs to be sent to both the EPA Region IV office and the TN APC. Existing facilities should have already sent in their report. An existing facility that has a permit and is meeting State or Local Air Pollution Control rules does not need to send in a report (see Frequently Asked Questions).

If an existing facility increases throughput and additional requirements apply, it has three years in order to meet those additional requirements. A Notification of Compliance Status report should be sent in when the facility meets the additional requirements from the increased throughput. This increase may also result in the need for an APC construction permit to modify the GDF’s permitted throughput (see State of TN Air Pollution Control Permits above).

Testing Notification

If your facility has a monthly throughput of 100,000 gallons or more, a Stage I system is required. The Stage I system must be tested at the time of installation and every three years thereafter. Facilities with a Stage II system must test the system within 30 days of installation or following an incident which could affect the system. Stage II systems must be tested every 5 years following the last test.

If you are required to conduct a performance test, you are required to notify APC in writing 60 days prior to conducting the test. This can be a simple letter to the Technical Secretary alerting APC to the expected date, time, location, and test to be conducted. A link to the testing procedures outlined in the 6C rule can be found below. 

Division of Underground Storage Tanks Information

The Division of Underground Storage Tanks (UST) is the division most GDFs should be familiar with. The UST site contains a wealth of information to help the GDF understand what is required of the facility to be in compliance with the UST rules. It also contains information on available training, and many guidance documents. As the UST website contains the majority of information necessary in operating your facility in accordance with their rules, the following only focuses on some key areas to keep in mind when starting or operating a facility with a UST. Links are provided for more information. 


UST forms can be found on these UST web pages.

For an existing facility, it depends on what is being done at the facility. If new tanks are being installed, follow the process as for a new installation. Other changes such as changing a tank from currently in use to temporarily out of use requires a Notification for Underground Storage Tanks be submitted within 30 days of the changes. If the owner is changing their address, there is a simple Change of Owner Mailing Address form that must be submitted. Similarly, if the facility is being sold, there is a form for both the buyer and the seller that must be submitted within 30 days of the transaction. Closing a tank is an involved process that includes sampling and you should work closely with the UST staff at your Environmental Field Office. In regards to notifications, tank closure requires submission of a Tank Closure Packet 30 days prior to closing a tank. Following the completion of the closure, a Notification for Underground Storage Tanks must be submitted within 30 days following the closure. This final submission stops the automatic billing procedure for annual tank registration. For changes in service, i.e. changing from gasoline to something the UST Division does not regulate like process wastewater, follow the steps for closing a tank and again, work closely with the UST staff at your Environmental Field Office. If your facility suspects there is a leak, contact UST at the Environmental Field Office for your area within 72 hours. Your contact with UST can help guide you through what other reports or plans may need to be submitted, including contacting the local fire department, the Initial Abatement Report, and a Corrective Action Plan. These notifications are important to help keep track of liability and UST fund eligibility.

Reports and logs

Reports and logs are part of making sure your system is working properly and can catch a leak earlier rather than later. These can include line tightness and line leak detector tests, cathodic protection logs, monthly spill bucket log, and more. When buying or selling a UST, the records and logs should be transferred to the new owner.


Training is required for operators of GDFs at three different levels of responsibility. These are known as A, B, and C class operators. The different classes can be held by multiple people or all classes held by a single person. For example, A and B operators may have oversight over multiple facilities or a single person may hold all three classes to run his personal business. Each class is necessary in relation to a facility. Training is available either online through the Tennessee Tank Helper or in a class room setting through Tank School. Tank School may also be useful if you have had a violation or need training on topics more specifically related to your facility as you can have direct interaction with UST staff.

Tools for your use

UST has created several online tools to help your facility be in compliance and understand its requirements. These tools include a Compliance Toolbox, a UST Owner Compliance Manual, Compliance Guidance Documents, and how to prepare for an inspection. These can be found on the UST Forms and Guidance web page and the UST Compliance and Inspections web page.

Division of Water Resources and Remediation Information

Depending on what is done at your facility either during construction or afterwards, there may be Division of Water Resources (DWR) permits that are needed. As these may or may not be needed either for a new source or an existing source, they are simply listed for reference and to bring them to your attention. Here are the most common:

Some others to be aware of in the event that they are required are:

  • Aquatic Resources Alteration Permit (ARAP) when a stream or wet weather conveyance is impacted. This permit should be applied for 90 days prior to beginning construction.
  • Underground Storage Tank Remediation NPDES in the event of a cleanup. 

If you have questions about these or other potentially needed permits, please contact the Small Business Environmental Assistance Program or the appropriate Division at an Environmental Field Office.