Frequent Questions

Can a hazardous waste that meets a listing description for a certain waste code be managed as nonhazardous waste if the waste does not contain any of the hazardous constituents listed in 40 CFR Part 261, Appendix VII?

No.  Wastes that fall within the scope of the listing descriptions (see §261.31, §261.32, or §261.33), but are not specifically exempted, are hazardous wastes regardless of their actual composition and constituent concentrations.  However, generators may petition for a site-specific delisting under §§260.20 and 260.22, which, if granted, will exclude the wastes from the listing of hazardous wastes under RCRA.  Through the delisting process, a waste handler must submit a petition to the EPA Region or authorized state.

In a delisting petition, the petitioner must provide sufficient information to show that the waste generated at a particular facility:  1) does not meet any of the criteria for which EPA listed the waste, 2) does not exhibit any of the hazardous waste characteristics (see §§261.20 to 261.24), and 3) does not present any additional factors (including additional constituents) that could cause the waste to be hazardous.  The petitioner must provide the information described in §§260.20 and 260.22 to EPA or the authorized state.  A waste handler submitting a delisting petition must continue to manage the waste as hazardous until a delisting exclusion is formally granted by EPA through a final rule in the Federal Register, or an equivalent process in authorized states.

You can view additional information regarding delisting hazardous waste at www.epa.gov/hw/delisting-hazardous-waste.

Additional guidance regarding delisting hazardous waste is available in the following documents: 

Monthly Call Center Report Question; January 2004 (RCRA Online #14699
Memo, Dellinger to Zick; February 12, 2004 (RCRA Online #14691)
Memo, Shapiro to Directors, Regions 1-10; November 29, 1995 (RCRA Online #11968
Memo, Bussard to Marrero; July 10, 1991 (RCRA Online #13489)
Memo, Lucero and Williams to Directors, Regions 1-10; July 20, 1987 ( RCRA Online #12981)
Memo, Maid to Ramsey; July 15, 1985 ( RCRA Online #11092
Memo, Maid to Triplett; November 13, 1984 (RCRA Online #11043
Monthly Call Center Report Question; September 1984 ( RCRA Online #12286

These documents are available at the following URL: https://yosemite.epa.gov/osw/rcra.nsf/how+to+use?OpenForm

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