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EPA`s Proposed Solid Waste Definition Fact Sheet, May 2007

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Courtesy of Custom Environmental Services

EPA's re-proposal on solid waste definition is receiving comments until June 25, 2007. This fact sheet summarizes the elements of the new proposal.

Basic Idea of Proposed Rule (as of March 26, 2007)

If hazardous secondary materials discarded by one company and reclaimed by another company are deemed not “discarded”, then they should not be regulated as wastes. If not a waste, then cannot be a hazardous waste under RCRA. Secondary materials are spent materials, listed sludges, and listed by-products that will be reclaimed. Examples include:

  • Spent solvents (F001 – F004)
  • Oil/water emulsion by-products from petroleum refineries (K049)
  • Electroplating sludges (F006)

Would codify Exclusions from the Definition of Solid Waste for materials that are:

  • Reclaimed under the control of the generator (generator-based) and not exported, or
  • Transferred by the generator to another company for the purposes of reclamation under specific conditions (transfer-based), or
  • Deemed “non-waste” through a case-by-case petition process.

Eligibility for Exclusions

 

Generator-Control-Based (Section IX)

  • Only legitimate recycling
  • No speculative accumulation
  • A one-time notice from generator to EPA or the state
  • Storage in land-based units at the generator site is allowed, provided that the secondary material is contained and there is no release to the environment.

Transfer-Based (Section X)

  • Generator must make “reasonable efforts” (e.g., audits or due diligence) to ensure that the reclaimer will legitimately recycle the material.
  • Generator and reclaimer must keep records of each shipment of excluded material for 3 years.
  • Material must be transferred directly from the generator to the reclaimer (i.e., no brokers involved). Treatment at one or more reclaimers performing multiple steps is acceptable.
  • Reclaimer must manage the material in a manner that is at least as protective as that employed for the analogous raw material.
  • Reclaimer must manage any residuals in a manner protective of human health and the environment.
  • Reclaimer must comply with the financial assurance requirements for permitted TSDFs.

 Industry Sectors Most Affected

  • Chemical manufacturing
  • Coating and engraving
  • Semiconductor and electronics manufacturing
  • Pharmaceutical manufacturing
  • Industrial waste management

 

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