Hazardous Waste


Comparison of State and Federal Hazardous Waste Rules

General Summary (find a description of Federal Rules here).

    Washington follows some of the federal rules for hazardous waste management and also has numerous state requirements.

1. Do I need an EPA ID number to handle hazardous wastes in Washington?

Main Hazardous Waste Page: State Hazardous Waste Management Information

2. How do I determine my generator status?

    Washington follows some of the federal rules for defining generator status and has many of its own state rules.Generator classifications are similar to, but different from the federal classifications: Large Quantity Generators (LQGs) generate more than 2,200 lb (1,000 kg) of DW or more than 2.2 lb (1 kg) of acutely hazardous waste per month. Medium Quantity Generator's (MQG's) generate between 220 lb (100 kg) and 2,200 lb (1,000 kg) of DW per month or batch. Small Quantity Generators (SQG's) generate less than 220 lb (100 kg) of DW or less than 2.2 lb (1 kg) of acutely hazardous waste per month or batch.In additional to federal requirements, generator status is based on the generator classification relevant to the generator's activities and whether the generator's production or accumulation of a specific waste is less than or greater than the "quantity exclusion limit" (QEL).LQGs and MQG's must have a current EPA ID number/state identification number. These numbers are location-specific.

3. How can I tell if the waste materials I handle are considered hazardous wastes?

    Washington follows some of the federal rules for defining hazardous wastes and has many of its own state rules. Hazardous waste in Washington is called Dangerous Waste (DW). The state also has its own listing of DW that must be regulated as a hazardous waste. The state-specific DWs include some wastes that under federal law would be exempt from regulation.Washington also regulates "Special Waste." These are wastes that the federal and state do not regulate as hazardous or extremely hazardous, but pose enough potential hazard to be regulated more stringently than ordinary solid (non-dangerous) waste. Generators who generate, transport, or manage waste materials in Washington must determine if the waste is a regulated DW or Extremely Hazardous Waste (EHW). The state requires state-only toxicity testing methods in addition to federal requirements.Quantity Exclusion Limits (QELs) are used to determine if DW is subject to any of the generator classifications. A QEL is the quantity, by weight, at which a waste becomes regulated under MQG or LQG requirements. Generators must add up all of the wastes with a common QEL that have been generated or accumulated for each month to determine their generator status for that month.

4. How long can I store hazardous wastes on site?

    Washington generally follows the federal rules for storing hazardous wastes and also has additional state-specific rules.Washington has additional rules for container management, including storage, labeling, loading areas and empty containers. Washington's has additional rules for DW storage tanks including loading areas, location, tank integrity assessment, labeling, emissions, inspection follow-up, and storage of dioxin wastes. Owners and operators of surface impoundments must comply with the state requirements for location and design.LQGs that store DW in containers or tanks must comply with the state's container and tank management requirements for shipping, secondary containment, labeling, inspections, aisle space requirements, reactive waste storage, and signage.MQG's must comply with the same on-site storage rules as LQGs, except for personnel training, reactive waste storage, storage tank, contingency plan and emergency procedure requirements.MQG's that accumulate DW in storage tanks must comply with the same federal requirements as SQG's. Two exceptions are special requirements for incompatible wastes and ignitable or reactive wastes. MQG's are prohibited from accumulating me than 2,200 pounds (lb) (1,000 kg) of dangerous waste on-site without a storage permit. SQG' are allowed to accumulate dangerous wastes without a permit for an indefinite period of time as long as the quantity stored does not equal or exceed at any time 2,200 lb (1,000 kg) for wastes with a 220 lb QEL, or 2.2 lb (1 kg) for wastes with a 2.2 lb QEL.

5. Who can transport and receive the wastes I ship off site?

    Washington generally follows the federal rules for shipping hazardous wastes to a TSD.The state has its own registration requirements for DW transporters. There are additional inspection requirements for radioactive waste.DW transporters must have EPA and state ID numbers. DW spills or discharges must be reported to the generator and federal and state authorities, as required.

6. What records do I have to keep?

    Washington generally follows the federal rules for recordkeeping.Generators must keep records on file for at least five years and provide upon request.Any generator that has an EPA/state ID number must submit an annual Generator Dangerous Waste Report.Exception reports must be submitted by LQGs and MQG' if they did not receive a copy of the manifest with the handwritten signature of the owner/operator of the designated waste management facility within 45 days of the date the waste was accepted by the initial transporter. If the generator is found to have caused dangerous conditions through improper waste management, the state may required the reports in less than 45 days.The state requires additional contingency plan content, implementation, notification, and follow-up reports. Notification forms must be kept on file until no longer a generator.

7. Do I have to file reports?

    Washington generally follows the federal rules for reporting. A generator or any person who has obtained an EPA/state identification number must submit an annual report to the department, on the Dangerous Waste Annual Report no later than March 1 for the preceding calendar year. In addition, any generator who stores, treats, or disposes of dangerous waste on-site must comply with the annual reporting requirements of the state's Facility reporting rules. Reporting for exports of hazardous waste is required on the annual report form. In addition, a separate, federal annual report requirement is also required

8. What training requirements do I have to meet?

    Washington generally follows the federal rules for training.The facility owner or operator must provide a program of classroom instruction or on-the-job training for facility personnel. This program must teach personnel to perform their duties in a way that ensures the facility's compliance with state rules, teach dangerous waste management procedures (including contingency plan implementation) relevant to the positions in which they are employed, must ensure that facility personnel are able to respond effectively to emergencies, and must include those elements set forth in the required training plan.

9. What differences between states may exist with regard to use of the the new standardized manifest form?

    As of September 5, 2006, the new standardized manifest form (EPA Form 8700-22) and its continuation sheet (EPA Form 8700-22A) must be used in every state to track hazardous waste shipments. There will be no state variations of the new federal form and states may not require information to be included on the form that is in addition to that required by federal rules. That said, some differences between states may exist with regard to use of the form. For Washington these differences include:

    Additional Wastes:
    WPCB, WSC2, WT01 or WT02, WP01 or WP02, WP03. Shipments of lab packs have special manifesting instructions.

    Exemptions: None.

    Don't send manifest copies to Washington State. If a generator plans to ship Dangerous Waste (DW) to the Hanford facility at Hanford, they must notify the facility in writing, send a copy of the prepared manifest before shipment, and receive approval.

    Exception reporting requirements are the same for LQGs and MQGs,

    The facility signed manifest copy must be kept for at least five years. Exception reports must be kept for at least five years.

    Other Notes, Comments::
    Item 13 - Do not use the State Lab Pack Codes WL01 or WL02. Item 19 - The receiving facility (TSDR) will enter a hazardous waste management code describing how the waste is managed at its site. Generators should use this code on their own annual report. Item 19 - Do not use the State hazardous waste management method code "H142" for extended storage. There are new procedures for tracking wastes rejected by destination facilities, residues from non-empty containers, and wastes entering or leaving the US. Page 2 of the manifest, "Designated Facility to Generator State", is not required in Washington State.

10. What are some other differences between federal and state rules?

    Unlike federal rules, Washington does not recognize an exception to the manifest requirement for MQG's who send their wastes off-site in accordance with a reclamation agreement. Generators are allowed to treat DW and special waste on-site without a permit under very specific requirements. Generators must prepare waste reduction plans if they produce more than 2,640 lb of DW in a calendar year. They must also submit the plan and pay an annual fee.SQGs must maintain a specific waste management status in order to stay an SQG and includes requirements for waste accumulated or stored; waste determination and generation amounts; treatment and disposal; reporting; and applying with all applicable rules and requirements.SQGs are not required to obtain an EPA/state ID number. However, SQG's waste transporters or facilities may not accept the waste unless the SQG has a number.DW generators must pay an annual hazardous Waste Education fee. LQGs and hazardous substance users that must prepare waste reduction plans are subject to additional fees.

11. Contacts

  • Darin Rice, Program Manager, Hazardous Waste & Toxics Reduction, (360) 407-6724, dric461@ecy.wa.gov