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U.S. EPA issues proposed rule to modify waste management regulations.

The U.S. EPA recently issued a proposed rule to modify its hazardous waste management regulations under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) for certain solvent-contaminated materials, such as reusable shop towels, rags, disposable wipes and paper towels. Specifically, EPA is proposing to conditionally exclude from the definition of hazardous waste both disposable and reusable industrial wipes that exhibit a hazardous characteristic' (i.e., ignitability, corrosivity, reactivity or toxicity) due to use with solvents or contamination with F001-F005 spent F-listed solvents or comparable P- and U-listed commercial chemical products.

The proposal contains separate requirements for disposable towels and reusable wipes. For example, if disposables are to be sent offsite for incineration, the following conditions must be met in order for the exclusion to apply:

* towels must be kept in covered containers:

* towels must be shipped with no free liquids:

* solvent removed from the towels must be managed appropriately;

* containers must minimize releases to the environment:

* containers must be labeled. "excluded solvent-contaminated wipes."

The Agency also outlines a performance standard for the determination of no free liquids. Specifically, a towel picked up must not drip and there should be no free-standing solvent left in the container. The removal of solvent from the wipe would not be considered treatment under the rule's proposed provisions.

Public comments are due to the EPA by February 18. The Agency is seeking comments on the requirements outlined for reusable and disposable industrial wipes and the no free liquids standard. In addition, EPA has requested input on several other issues addressed in the proposal, including: accumulation time limit, exotic solvents, types and labeling of containers used in transportation, inter- and intra-company transfers, speculative accumulation for reusable wipes and record keeping.

A copy of the proposed rule and other related information are available through EPA's website at www.epa.gov/epaoswer/hazwaste/ id/solvents/wipes.htm. Electronic comments may be submitted through the link to EPA's E-Docket. Written comments should be mailed to: RCRA Information Center, Mail code: 5305T, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC, 20460, Attention Docket ID Number RCRA-2003-0004. Contact Amy Blankenbiller at the AFS Washington Office at 202 842-4864 with any questions.
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Title Annotation:Washington Alert
Comment:U.S. EPA issues proposed rule to modify waste management regulations.(Washington Alert)
Publication:Modern Casting
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 1, 2004
Words:361
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