Frequent Questions

A facility generates and discards chromium metal, such as chrome plated parts. If the metal parts fail the Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure (TCLP), are they excluded from the definition of hazardous waste?


The exclusion from the definition of hazardous waste for chromium under §261.4(b)(6) presently applies to only those wastes specifically listed in §261.4(b)(6)(ii). The exclusion states that the waste must be exclusively (or nearly exclusively) trivalent chromium, be generated from a process that uses trivalent chromium exclusively and does not generate hexavalent chromium, and must be typically and frequently managed in non-oxidizing environments. In addition, the waste must be specifically listed in subparagraphs (A) through (H) of §261.4(b)(6)(ii). These wastes are excluded because members of the leather tanning and titanium dioxide production industries submitted evidence to EPA that successfully demonstrated that the wastes were not hazardous (Memo, Williams to Strassell; January 13, 1988 (RCRA Online #11319).

The October 30, 1980, Federal Register (45 FR 72035; OSW-FR-80-016) describes this exclusion in greater detail and is available at the following URL:

Additional guidance regarding the exclusion for trivalent chromium is available in the following memoranda:

Memo, Cotsworth to Montello; July 5, 2000 (RCRA Online #14457) Memo, Cotsworth to Dye; February 26, 1998 (RCRA Online #14477) Memo, Shapiro to Gallo; June 11, 1996 (RCRA Online #14025
Memo, Fordham to Broadhurst; January 18, 1993 (RCRA Online 
Memo, Scarberry to Cerar; October 3, 1989 (RCRA Online # 11472) Memo, Claussen to Winlow; March 21, 1986 (RCRA Online # 12587

These memos are available at the following URL:


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