Frequent Questions

What revisions did EPA finalize in the 2016 Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Rule? When will the rule become effective and how will it be affected by state authorization?

On November 28, 2016, EPA published the Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Final Rule. This rule revises the hazardous waste generator regulations to make the rules easier to understand, facilitate better compliance, provide greater flexibility in how hazardous waste is managed, and close important gaps in the regulations. Two key provisions where EPA is finalizing flexibility are 1) Allowing a hazardous waste generator to avoid increased burden of a higher generator status when generating episodic waste provided the episodic waste is properly managed, and 2) Allowing a very small quantity generator (VSQG) to send its hazardous waste to a large quantity generator under control of the same person. The rule also improves hazardous waste risk communication and emergency management requirements and provides a number of clarifications without increasing burden, including a reorganization of the hazardous waste generator regulations so that all of the generator regulations are in one place.

This final rule is effective on May 30, 2017. This rule finalizes regulations that amend certain sections of the hazardous waste generator regulations in 40 CFR Parts 260 through 265, 268, 270, 273, and 279. These regulations were promulgated under non-Hazardous and Solid Waste Amendment (HSWA) of 1984 authority. Thus, the standards will be applicable on the effective date only in those states that do not have final authorization of their base RCRA programs. Moreover, authorized states are required to modify their programs only when EPA promulgates federal regulations that are more stringent or broader in scope than the authorized state regulations. For those changes that are less stringent, states are not required to modify their programs. A discussion of the revisions made by this rule and whether they are more or less stringent is available on page 85801 of the final rule. Information about a state’s authorization status and their plan to incorporate these revisions is available from the state hazardous waste program. A list of state hazardous waste programs is available at the following URL:

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