Category Archives: ERHC Environmental

Underground Storage Tanks


Underground Storage Tank (UST) Inspections


Underground Storage Tanks (USTs) containing gasoline and diesel fuel can rust and leak over time, impact soil and groundwater and pose a number of environmental and health risks. There are over 400 gas station facilities in Essex County.  New Jersey requires gas station owners to take precautionary measures to insure against leaks and, in the event a tank leaks, prompt action to minimize those risks.


The Underground Storage Tank Program provides compliance monitoring/leak detection of active regulated underground storage tanks in accordance with NJDEP regulations, policies and procedures. The program includes the provision of compliance assistance, the performance of UST facility inspections, the investigation of regulated UST related complaints, the issuance of enforcement documents that may include penalty assessments and other steps which will bring the owner and/or operator into compliance.

Registration Forms

Source Registration Requirement for Air Pollution Sources

 The Air Pollution Control Code of the Essex Regional Health Commission requires the registration of certain fuel burning units (oil, gas, coal) and air pollution sources and the permitting of incinerators.  The Code applies to commercial and industrial facilities, and residential/apartment buildings comprised of eight or more units within the jurisdiction of the Commission. 

All registered/permitted facilities are sent renewal notices at the beginning of each registration /permitting cycle.  The current registration/permitting cycle extends from January 1, 2012 to December 31, 2016. 

Any existing or new facility which has not registered/permitted equipment for the current registration/permitting cycle or has added equipment which has already been previously registered with the Commission, may download registration applications, using the attached (buttons). 

All facilities must submit the General Facility Information page.  Equipment inventory pages must be submitted for the specific equipment at each facility.  Emission Source page must be used for all other sources of air pollution not specifically indicated. 

Any facility which has to permit an incinerator must contact this agency directly. 

The Air Pollution Control Code can also be downloaded here. 

(The forms and Code require the Adobe Acrobat Reader.) 

*** See below for description of forms



Description of Forms

Cover_Letter.pdf Legal Requirement for Fees
Instruction_Sheet.pdf  Instruction Sheet for Fee Schedule
SR_AB_Appl.pdf Equipment inventory Section- Spray Booths, Fuel Burning Equipment
SR_DC_Appl.pdf Dryclearner Equipment, Fuel Burning Equipment
SR_FB_form.pdf Fuel Burning Equipment
SR_GENInfo_form.pdf General Information and Facility Profile
SR_GS_Appl.pdf Gasoline Dispensing Operation
SR_Source_form.pdf Equipment Inventory Section
the_ERHC_apollcc.pdf Air Pollution Control Code of the Essex Regional Health Commission


Noise Pollution


Noise Control Program

 In 1974, the EPA estimated that nearly 100 million Americans lived in areas where the daily average noise levels exceeded its identified safe Day-Night Level of 55 dB (EPA, 1974).  In 1990, that estimate had risen to 138 million people”. (Eldred, 1990)

Unregulated sources of noise can have impacts far beyond the obvious transitory nuisance, and complainants may be enduring more than simple annoyance.  Exposure to loud noise has been shown to result in uncontrollable stress which can result in alterations in moods as well as hormonal and nervous system changes in healthy subjects (Brier, 1987).  A lack of control over noise results in a variety of neurobiological and behavioral alterations, a phenomenon known as “learned helplessness” (Brier, 1987).  It has been demonstrated that blood pressure is reproducibly elevated in response to intermittent loud noise (Sawada, 1993).

The noxious stimulus of noise has long been used as a laboratory model for producing stress because it results in the same biological and physiological responses as other stressors (Suter, 1992).  Noise has been clearly implicated in sleep disturbance (Lukas, 1977), resulting in a cascade of negative effects (Suter, 1992).  The stress, tension and fatigue associated with long-term exposure to noise has destroyed marriages, cost people their jobs and forced other people to sell their houses at significant losses (RNTAC, 1991-2002).” *

Noise Regulations in New Jersey are designed to limit noise disturbances generated by fixed Commercial and Industrial facilities and a variety of other activities, as enumerated in  NJAC 7:29.

The Commission investigates complaints of noise disturbances on a 24 hour/day basis.

* Excerpted with permission of the author, Dr. Eric Zwerling, from the Introduction to the  “Community Noise Enforcement” training manual, The State University of Rutgers, Noise Technical Assistance Center, Department of Environmental Sciences and New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, 2002.

Environmental Specialists Michael Fonzino and Thomas Longo take sound level measurements of an HVAC unit


2012 Complaint Investigations
Air Pollution Control 246
Noise Pollution Control 49
Water Pollution Control 32
Pesticide Control 3
Enforcement Actions 738
Facility Inspections 1383

Up Air Water Noise

Water Pollution


Water Pollution Control

The Commission investigates complaints regarding discharges to surface and ground water, as well as complaints involving non public community water supply systems. Point sources of unpermitted discharges are identified and corrective action initiated in accordance with state and federal regulations.


2012 Complaint Investigations
Air Pollution Control 246
Noise Pollution Control 49
Water Pollution Control 32
Pesticide Control 3
Enforcement Actions 738
Facility Inspections 1383

The Commission is responsible for the inspection of non community public water supply systems in the categories of transient and non transient facilities.  The facilities are inspected to assure that the water system is maintained and monitored for levels of certain contaminants including:

  •  Coliform Bacteria

  •  Nitrates/Nitrites

  •  Lead and Copper

  •  Inorganic Compounds

  •  Asbestos

  •  Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC’s)

  •  Pesticides

  •  Synthetic Organic Compounds (SOC’s)

All violations of applicable state and federal regulations regarding non community public water systems are reported to the NJDEP and enforced in the appropriate venue.


Air Pollution


Air Pollution Control

The ERHC enforces provisions of state and local air quality regulations and investigates citizen complaints, approximately 500 annually.  All complaints are addressed on a priority basis.


2012 Complaint Investigations
Air Pollution Control 246
Noise Pollution Control 49
Water Pollution Control 32
Pesticide Control 3
Enforcement Actions 738
Facility Inspections 1383

The responsibility for inspecting greater than two thirds of the regulated facilities within the county is assigned to the Commission by the NJDEP; facilities include gasoline service stations, dry cleaners, auto body shops, and the majority of other commercial and small manufacturing facilities.

Compliance inspections of facilities are scheduled on a prioritized basis from the Commission’s computerized information management system. Conducting an average 1,000 inspections per year, facilities are selected for inspection based on inspection cycles mandated by the NJDEP, compliance history, new regulatory initiatives or public health concerns.