Frequent Questions

Are small quantity generators (SQGs) and large quantity generators (LQGs) allowed to treat hazardous waste on site without obtaining a permit?

SQGs and LQGs may treat hazardous waste on site without a permit provided they are in compliance with the applicable provisions in 40 CFR Section 262.34, and provided that the treatment is not thermal treatment (51 FR 10146, 10168; March 24, 1986).  For example, in order to treat hazardous waste on site for less than 90 days in accordance with Section 262.34, and the waste must be placed in generator accumulation units that are in compliance with Part 265, Subparts I, J, W, and/or DD.  Generators should check with their implementing agencies before treating waste in accordance with Section 262.34.  Some authorized states are more stringent than the federal program and require a permit for generator treatment activities. 

Check your state regulations.

Note: On November 28, 2016, EPA published the Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Final Rule, which makes several revisions to the hazardous waste generator regulations. These revisions may affect the information provided in this FAQ. The final rule and additional information, including a fact sheet, frequent questions, and a webinar recording and slides, are available at

The Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Final Rule is effective on May 30, 2017; however, implementation in a particular state depends on the state’s authorization status. A discussion of the effect that this final rule will have on state authorization is available on page 85801 of the rule. Information about how the rule will affect the requirements in this FAQ in a particular state is best obtained from the state hazardous waste program. A list of state hazardous waste programs is available at

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