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Counting Hazardous Waste to Determine Generator Status

Counting Hazardous Waste to Determine Generator Status

In order to determine your status as a generator of hazardous waste:  Large Quantity Generator (LQG), Small Quantity Generator (SQG), or Conditionally Exempt Small Quantity Generator (CESQG), you must know how much hazardous waste and/or acute hazardous waste you generate in a calendar month (EPA guidance:  Generator Summary Chart).  Just as important as knowing what waste to count is knowing what waste not to count towards your generator status.

The applicable regulations can be found in 40 CFR 261.5 which is entitled:  Special Requirements for Hazardous Waste Generated by Conditionally Exempt Small Quantity Generators.  Don’t let the title fool you, while a reasonable person may infer these regulations apply only to CESQG’s in fact they apply to all generators of hazardous waste.

According to 40 CFR 261.5(c), when determining your hazardous waste generator status, you must count all hazardous waste you generate, except hazardous waste that:

§261.4(c) allows for exemption from regulation as a hazardous waste for up to 90 days for a hazardous waste generated in an out of service product or raw materials storage tank, vehicle, manufacturing process or unit, or pipeline.

§261.4(d-f) allows for exemption from regulation as a hazardous waste for waste characterization samples and treatability samples.

§261.6(a)(3) exemptions from RCRA regulation for specified recyclable materials.

§261.7(a)(1) is the exemption from RCRA regulation for the residue of empty containers (aka:  The RCRA Empty Exemption).

§261.8 is the exemption from regulation under RCRA for PCB’s regulated under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).

Research these regulations carefully to ensure the determination of your hazardous waste generator status is correct.  Then contact me for a free consultation of your requirements to provide RCRA Training for Hazardous Waste Personnel and DOT HazMat Employee Training.  I provide both of these in one day training sessions either at public events or at your facility.

You may also be interested in this article where I review the regulations regarding double-counting of your hazardous waste generation.