NEW CHANGES TO REQUIREMENTS FOR HAZARDOUS WASTE GENERATORS – PART 5

Welcome to Part 5 in our series of blogs to explain the upcoming changes to RCRA regulations that will impact generators of hazardous wastes.  The changes will go into effect on May 30, 2017.  The eight areas of change discussed in Part 1 of this blog were:

  1. Reorganization of the Hazardous Waste Generator Regulations and modifies the organization of the Preamble.
  2. Changes to 40 CFR Part 260, which covers definitions
  3. Changes to 40 CFR Part 261, requiring biennial reporting by facilities that recycle hazardous waste without storing it.
  4. Changes to 40 CFR Part 262, which covers the standards applicable to generators of hazardous waste
  5. Additional changes to 40 CFR Part 262 for generators that would ordinarily have changed status due to an episodic event
  6. Additional changes to 40 CFR Part 262 clarifying expectations related to Preparedness, Prevention, and Emergency Procedures for SQG’s and LQG’s
  7. Technical corrections and changes to 40 CFR Part 257
  8. New discussion of “Electronic Tools to Streamline Hazardous Waste Reporting and Record keeping Requirements”

In review, Part 1 of this blog mentioned the eight main changes pending, Part 2 covered the reorganization, Part 3 covered changes to 40 CFR Part 261 – definitions, and Part 4 covered changes to 40 CFR Part 261 relating to additional reporting requirements for certain recyclers.  Today, we will BEGIN to tackle the fourth item from the list above – changes to 40 CFR Part 262, covering the standards applicable to generators of hazardous waste.  Before we get started, let me beg forgiveness for the length of this blog.  Item #4 in the list is necessarily the meatiest part of the 8 main changes listed above.  In fact, is it so big, we need to break it down into 16 pieces as follows:

A. Addition of Terms Used in this Part and Changes to Purpose, Scope, and Applicability

B. Waste Determinations

C. Determining Generator Category

D. Very Small Quantity Generator Conditions for Exemption

E. Marking and Labeling and Hazardous Waste Numbers

F. Revisions to Satellite Accumulation Area (SAA) Regulations for SQGs and LQGs

G. Accumulation of Hazardous Waste by SQGs and LQGs on Drip Pads and in Containment Buildings

H. Special Requirements for Ignitable and Reactive Wastes for LQGs

I. LQG Closure Regulations

J. Documentation of Inspections of Waste Accumulation Units

K. Allowing VSQGs To Send Hazardous Waste to LQGs Under the Control of the Same Person

L. EPA Identification Numbers and Re-notification for SQGs and LQGs

M. Provision Prohibiting Generators From Disposing of Liquids in Landfills

N. Clarification of Biennial Reporting Requirements

O. Extending Time Limit for Accumulation Under Alternative Requirements for Laboratories Owned by Eligible Academic Entities

P. Deletion of Performance Track and Project XL Regulations

 Today, we only have time to address “A. Addition of Terms Used in this Part and Changes to Purpose, Scope, and Applicability.”  In reality, A. covers the subparts added and subtracted to Part 262.  There are 5 changes, each listed in bold below and then described.

A. ADDITION OF TERMS USED IN THIS PART AND CHANGES TO PURPOSE, SCOPE, AND APPLICABILITY.

4 New Sections to Part 262

In its reorganization, EPA is finalizing the following modifications to 40 CFR Part 262 subpart A:  three new sections are being added in order to define the conditions for exemption for each category of generators that accumulate waste on site, and one new section is being added to define the conditions for exemption for Satellite Accumulation Areas (“SAA’s”). These new sections are § 262.14 for Very Small Quantity Generators (“VSQGs”), 262.15 for SAAs, 262.16 for Small Quantity Generators (“SQGs”), and 262.17 for exemption for Large Quantity Generators (“LQG’s”).

A New Section 262.1 and Changes to 262.10

EPA hope to clarify the distinction between the two types of generator requirements:

(1) The requirements that any generator generating hazardous waste must meet (now termed the “independent requirements”), and

(2) The conditional requirements that a generator who also accumulates waste must meet only if it wants the benefits of an exemption from RCRA storage facility permitting (or interim status) requirements (now termed the “conditions for exemption”)

Remember, EPA’s goal is to clarify and simplify the regulations to help improve understanding and compliance.  EPA will now in include definitions for both of these in a new section of the regulations.  EPA will also list which regulations for generators are “independent requirements” and which are “conditions for exemptions”.  Finally, EPA also hope to clarify the regulatory difference between those types of requirements as they relate to enforcement. These changes were proposed in a new 262.1 and in revisions to the existing 262.10(a) and (g).

A New Explicit Section Stating Generators Cannot Ship to Non-Designated Facilities

While EPA states that the responsibility is placed on the generator of hazardous waste to ensure its hazardous waste is properly managed from cradle to grave, many generators, perhaps distracted with the cumbersome nature of the regulations, have failed to demonstrate this responsibility.  There are already many existing regulatory provisions stating that generators must send their hazardous waste only to authorized TSDFs or other authorized facilities (for example 262.18(c), 262.20(b), and 262.40(a)).   In order to be even more explicit, EPA is adding section 262.10(a)(3), which is a statement expressly prohibiting a generator from sending hazardous waste to a facility not authorized to accept.

Deletion of 262.10(c) – Regulations for Generators who

EPA states that 262.10(c) is outdated, confusing and unnecessary. The provision describes the requirements for a generator who treats, stores, or disposes of hazardous waste on site and includes a list of provisions these generators must comply with.  The Agency no longer makes the distinction between generators that send waste for treatment off site and those that manage waste on site, so the section will be deleted.

Deletion of Reference to Laboratory XL Project -in 262.10(j)

The Laboratory XL Project was created for 3 universities, but expired in April 2009, so EPA is deleting the reference in the current update.

The next post will continue covering changes to 40 CFR Part 262 and we will focus on item B listed above as “B. Waste Determinations”.

F.

NEW CHANGES TO REQUIREMENTS FOR HAZARDOUS WASTE GENERATORS – PART 4

This is part 4 in our series of blogs to explain the upcoming changes to RCRA regulations that will impact generators of hazardous wastes.  The changes will go into effect on May 30, 2017.  The eight changes we described previously are:

  1. Reorganization of the Hazardous Waste Generator Regulations and modifies the organization of the Preamble.
  2. Changes to 40 CFR Part 260, which covers definitions
  3. Changes to 40 CFR Part 261, requiring biennial reporting by facilities that recycle hazardous waste without storing it.
  4. Changes to 40 CFR Part 262, which covers the standards applicable to generators of hazardous waste
  5. Additional changes to 40 CFR Part 262 for generators that would ordinarily have changed status due to an episodic event
  6. Additional changes to 40 CFR Part 262 clarifying expectations related to Preparedness, Prevention, and Emergency Procedures for SQG’s and LQG’s
  7. Technical corrections and changes to 40 CFR Part 257
  8. New discussion of “Electronic Tools to Streamline Hazardous Waste Reporting and Record keeping Requirements”

In our prior posts, we have given an overview of the coming changes and we have discussed some of the details of numbers 1 and 2 above.  Today, we will tackle the third item from the list above – changes to 40 CFR Part 261, requiring biennial reporting by facilities that recycle hazardous waste without storing it.

The new rule, Part 261.6(c)(2), requires owners or operators of certain recycling facilities to comply with the biennial reporting requirements of 40 CFR 265.75.  The recycling facilities affected are those that do not store the materials prior to recycling AND either partially reclaim hazardous wastes into commodity-like materials, or recycle regulated hazardous wastes.  This provision is only applicable to owners and operators of facilities that receive regulated hazardous waste from off site and/or do not store incoming hazardous waste prior to recycling. Large Quantity Generators or “LQGs” that generate and recycle their own regulated hazardous wastes are not impacted and are still regulated under § 261.6(b).

The next post will cover changes to 40 CFR Part 262, which covers the standards applicable to generators of hazardous waste.

Fm.

FAQ’S – WHAT TYPES OF PROJECTS ARE THE RIGHT MATCH FOR ALTIRAS RECOVERY?

Altiras Recovery seeks to develop beneficial reuse projects for the recovery of solvents, specialty chemicals, or to manufacture products from chemical coproducts or byproducts.  The company seeks to develop technology and invest capital in these types of projects for the sustainable, mutual benefit of Altiras and generator of the coproducts or byproducts.  However, not all opportunities are right.  The following criteria are guidelines for projects that are well suited for Altiras Recovery investment.

Adequate Mutual Economic Benefit:

The first criteria is that the intrinsic value of the solvents or key constituents within the coproduct or byproduct should be adequate to justify the investment (most often multi-million dollar investments).  An initial estimate of the potential intrinsic value can be approximated by taking the contained pounds of the valued constituents time the approximate respective market value of those constituents times 80%.  The 80% factor is a quick estimate to account for typical recovery yields.   In general, plant technical and operations management personnel will have a very good sense of how much money is being lost when these valued constituents are not recovered – even excluding the actual disposal cost.  In other cases, the intrinsic value may be low, but disposal costs may be very high.  Ultimately, the combination of cost avoidance (waste disposal & transportation) and intrinsic value must be sufficient to justify the capital investment and provide a reasonable return for both the generator of the material and Altiras.

Sustainability:

Sustainability has many meanings to different people, but at it’s core, sustainability means “ongoing.” Any potential project should be established in an environment where the opportunity should last for many years.  At a minimum, that means:

  1. If the coproduct, byproduct, or used solvent/intermediate is produced by the manufacturing of Product A, then Product A must be expected to be very stable or growing for the foreseeable future.   This means the following must also be true:
    • Demand for Product A is expected to be steadily growing
    • Supply of Product A in the marketplace will not be growing faster than demand
    • There are no disruptive technologies on the horizon that will change how Product A is made, thereby impacting the quality or quantity of the coproducts, byproducts, or used solvents/intermediates
    • There are no product B’s that are likely to displace Product A in the foreseeable future
    • There are no known regulatory changes that will negatively impact production of Product A
  2. There are no known regulatory changes that will negatively impact the use of the currently produced coproducts, byproducts, or the use of the specific chemicals that are currently used to make Product A

Stable Market for Finished Products

For any product, it is important to have viable, stable markets.  Thus, the products that would be produced from a capital investment in beneficial use must have reliable and stable outlets.  The most ideal situation is one in which the finished products could be directly used by the manufacturer who is producing the coproducts or byproducts.  Sometimes this is not possible, so a suitable alternative is having the finished products consistently sold in a local market under long-term contract.

RCRA Pathway

RCRA regulations can be confusing.  There are a number of viable pathways to accomplish legitimate beneficial reuse of coproducts, byproducts and used chemicals.  However, in some cases, the pathway may not be clear.  Altiras RCRA experts can help assess the various options for legitimate recycling to ensure a viable project.

Culture

Cultural fit is critical to a lasting long-term relationship.  Altiras operates in an open, candid culture, driven to create new business opportunities, yet with a desire to enjoy every moment among people we enjoy working with.  Our culture is one where we rely on our partners and customers to work with us to jointly solve challenges to our mutual benefit.  Simply put, some cultures are a good fit and some are not.

 

For more information on what types of projects are the right fit for Altiras, please contact Todd Pencarinha at Altiras Houston office at 713-568-3651.

Altiras Recovery Succeeds at Deodorizing Light Fuel

Altiras Recovery pic
Altiras Recovery
Image: altiras.com

Todd Pencarinha has amassed considerable experience in both business leadership and chemical processing. Todd Pencarinha holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from The Ohio State University and an M.B.A. from The University of Texas. After creating and developing a comprehensive beneficial reuse program as partner, co-founder, and vice president of Emergent Industrial Solutions, Mr. Pencarinha co-founded Altiras in 2010 with Steve Marshall and Chip Ruth. Mr. Pencarinha currently serves as president at Altiras, where he oversees the development of innovative chemical reuse and recovery solutions and develops new business opportunities and projects in the area of beneficial reuse of chemical coproducts and byproducts.

Altiras subsidiary Altiras Recovery, which focuses on unlocking new market value from discarded solvents, wastes, and chemical and fuel coproducts and by-products, recently developed an innovative new treatment process with significant implications for the fuel industry. While serving a supply-side client who had encountered challenges disposing of an extremely odorous fuel, Altiras Recovery developed a method to successfully deodorize the fuel by manipulating mercaptans.

Also known as thiols, mercaptans emit strong, repugnant odors that are highly detectable to humans. In fact, skunk spray is comprised primarily of thiol compounds, which causes an especially repulsive odor. To solve the client’s issue, Altiras Recovery developed a method to completely eliminate mercaptans from light fuel products, thereby erasing their odor. In just a few weeks, the firm had identified and proven a method that will support future fuel beneficial reuse efforts.