Hazardous Waste Generator Improvement Rule

by William J. Shoemaker, CIH

Posted on Wed Feb 15, 2017



The US EPA published the Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements final rule on November 28, 2016. The final rule takes effect on May 30, 2017. Below is a limited summary of significant changes to the hazardous waste rules.

General

  1. REGULATION RESTRUCTURING FOR SIMPLICITY
  2. Most of the regulations related to generators are moved to 40 CFR 262: 40 CFR 262.15, 262.16, and 262.17. There will now be less jumping between sections when reading the regulations.
  3. DEFINITONS
  4. Defined what constitutes generator knowledge in making a waste determination.
  5. GENERATOR STATUS CLARIFICATION
  6. A generator is not permitted to average waste generation over several months to determine generation status. Generators must know how much they generate each month.
  7. WASTE DETERMINATION CLARIFICATION
  8. Waste determination must be made at the point of generation, before mixing or diluting. Waste determination cannot be done at the CAA.
  9. WASTE LABELING CHANGE
  10. Waste containers must contain the words "Hazardous Waste" AND "Hazards of the Contents" in both the SAA and CAA. In the past they only required "Hazardous Waste" OR "Contents" in the SAA and "Hazardous Waste" AND "Contents" in the CAA. The hazards can be identified as any of the following:
    1. Waste codes
    2. Pictograms
    3. NFPA marking
    4. DOT labels
    5. Wording
  11. WASTE LABELING CHANGE
  12. Waste codes must be added to containers pre-transportation (when preparing to ship off-site).
  13. WASTE LABELING CHANGE
  14. "Full Date" must be on the containers in the SAA. Regulators will use this to determine when the 3 day limit starts when more than 55 gallons or 1 quart of acutely hazardous waste is in the SAA.
  15. WASTE STORAGE IN SAA CLARIFICATION
  16. 3 days is clarified as 3 calendar days.
  17. WASTE LABELING CLARIFICATION
  18. "Accumulation Start Date" must be on containers in the CAA. Regulators will use this to determine when the 90 or 180 days starts.
  19. WASTE STORAGE IN SAA CLARIFICATION
  20. In SAAs, incompatible waste may be separated by "any practical means".
  21. WASTE STORAGE IN SAA CHANGE
  22. In SAAs, waste containers may be left open when necessary for the operation of equipment or when closing would create a hazard, BUT only when the equipment is in operation. Therefore, the containers may only be left open temporarily.
  23. EPISODIC GENERATION NEW RULE
  24. VSQGs and SQGs are now allowed episodic generation once per year whether planned or unplanned without impacting generation status. VSQGs and SQGs can apply to the EPA for approval of a second episodic generation. See specifics for VSQGs below. The EPA must be notified 30 days in advance of a planned episodic generation, and within 72 hours if the episodic generation is unplanned.

CESQGs (now VSQGs)

  1. DEFINITIONS
  2. Now called Very Small Quantity Generators.
  3. WASTE CONSOLIDATION NEW RULE
  4. VSQGs can now send their waste to a Large Quantity Generator under the control of the same person for consolidation.
    1. Rule at 40 CFR 262.14(a)(5)(viii)
    2. No manifest required
    3. Must follow DOT shipping rules
  5. EPISODIC GENERATION
  6. For Episodic Generation, containers must be labeled "Episodic Hazardous Waste" Generator must complete a Site ID form, and get an EPA ID number.

SQGs

  1. GENERATOR STATUS NOTIFICATION NEW RULE
  2. SQGs must use the Site ID form to re-notify on their generator status every 4 years beginning in 2021, even if their generator status doesn't change.
  3. CAA STORAGE CLARIFICATION
  4. Now permitted to have waste in containment buildings per section IX G. Building must be marked with a "Hazardous Waste" sign. NOTE: If storing in an accumulation building, SQGs must remove waste within 90 days (not 180 days).

LQGs

  1. WASTE CONSOLIDATION NEW RULE
  2. If an LQG receives waste from VSQGs for consolidation, the LQG must notify the EPA 30 days before the first shipment.
  3. WASTE CONSOLIDATION NEW RULE
  4. If an LQG receives waste from VSQGs, the LQG must include the received waste in their biennial report.
  5. WASTE CONSOLIDATION NEW RULE
  6. If shipping waste consolidated from VSQGs interstate, all states must have adopted the provision, since it is a less stringent rule.
  7. CONTINGENCY PLAN NEW RULE
  8. LQGs must develop a quick reference guide for their Contingency Plan to aid emergency responders.

For a complete copy of the rule click the read more button below.

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