An LQG consists of:
- Facilities generate greater than or equal to 1000 kg [approx. 2200 lb] of non-acute hazardous waste in one calendar month.
- Facilities generate more than 1 kg (2.2 lbs) of acute hazardous waste in one calendar month
- Facilities generate greater than 100 kilograms (220 lbs) of any residue or contaminated soil, water, or other debris resulting from the cleanup of a spill, into or on any land or water, of any acute hazardous waste in one calendar month
Onsite accumulation time at an LQG does not exceed 90 days.
A LQG who accumulates hazardous waste for more than 90 days (without a regulator extension) is subject to all treatment, storage and disposal facilities (TSDF) and permitting requirements.
Typically at LQGs, hazardous waste being generated at the facility is first accumulated in Satellite Accumulation Areas/Satellite Accumulation Points (SAA/SAPs) before being transferred to a central accumulation area (i.e., 90-day storage area). In general, whenever hazardous waste is being poured, mixed, spread, or otherwise handled, all personnel involved in the operation must have immediate access (e.g., direct or unimpeded access) to an internal alarm or emergency communication device, either directly or through visual or voice contact with another employee, unless such a device is not required because the generation or accumulation area does not lend itself for safety reasons to have a particular kind of equipment. (NOTE: In the event there is just one employee on the premises while the facility is operating, the employee must have immediate access (e.g., direct or unimpeded access) to a device, such as a telephone (immediately available at the scene of operation) or a hand-held two-way radio, capable of summoning external emergency assistance, unless such a device is not required because the generation or accumulation area does not lend itself for safety reasons to have a particular kind of equipment.)
Summary of Federal Requirements
Satellite Accumulation Areas/Satellite Accumulation Points
LQG Central Accumulation Area (i.e., 90-day Container Storage)
- LQGs may keep waste at a satellite accumulation areas/points (SAA/SAP) and meet less stringent storage and labeling requirements. A SAA/SAP is defined as at or near the point of generation where wastes initially accumulate and is under the control of the operator of the process generating the waste.
There has long been debate about the interpretation of the phrases "at or near" in relationship to SAA/SAPs. In the Preamble to the November 2016 rule revision, page 85767, EPA stated that it would not consider a shed outside a building where the waste is initially generated to be "at or near the point of generation." But, implementing regulatory agencies retain the authority in determining what they consider "at or near the point of generation."
There has also been debate over the meaning of the phrase "under the control of the operator" in relationshio to SAA/SAPs. In the Preamble to the November 2016 rule revision, page 85767, there is a lengthy discussion about the meaning of the phrase "under the control of the operator." EPA believes that there can be more than one operator per SAA over time. For example, as employees change shifts over the course of a day, the role of the operator can be transferred from one employee to another. Likewise, the EPA believes that there can also be more than one operator per SAA at the same time. For example, multiple operators may be running laboratory equipment in the same room and share hazardous waste containers located in a single SAA. However, the term operator does refer to an individual or individuals responsible for the equipment or processes generating the hazardous waste and does not refer to a company or entity as a whole. In relationship to what constitutes "control," EPA stated that the intent of the term is to ensure that someone familiar with the operations generating the hazardous waste is aware of and able to attend to the operations, if needed, while also providing some measure of controlled access.
- Containers must be in good condition and compatible with the waste stored in them. Containers must be kept closed except:
- when adding, removing, or consolidating waste
- when temporary venting of a container is necessary on one of the following situations:
- for the proper operation of equipment
- to prevent dangerous situations, such as build-up of extreme pressure.
(NOTE: In the Preamble to the November 2016 rule revision, page 85764, EPA stresses it does not intend to create a loophole to the closed container requirement or to allow intentional evaporation of hazardous waste. Rather, the intent of the flexibility is to address the limited cases in which strict adherence to the container closure requirements could substantially increase a risk of a hazardous waste incident rather than decrease it. The flexibility for containers to remain open in specific situations applies only to containers in SAAs.
- Containers must be marked HAZARDOUS WASTE and with an indication of the contents hazards such as one of the following approaches:
- the applicable hazardous waste characteristic(s) (i.e., ignitable, corrosive, reactive, toxic), or
- hazard communication consistent with the Department of Transportation requirements at 49 CFR 172 subpart E (labeling) or subpart F (placarding), or
- a hazard statement or pictogram consistent with the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard at 29 CFR 1910.1200, or
- a chemical hazard label consistent with the NFPA code 704).The total amount stored in the SAA/SAP does not exceed 55 gal of non-acute hazardous waste or 1 qt of liquid acute hazardous waste or 1 kg (2.2 lb) of solid acute hazardous waste in containers.
- When waste is accumulated in excess of quantity limitations, at or near the point of generation the facility has 2 options:
- Within 3 consecutive days, upgrade the SAA/SAP so that it complies with the requirements for a central accumulation area (180-day storage area, or
- Remove the excess waste from the SAA/SAP within 3 days to one of the following locations:
- a central accumulation area (180-day storage area)
- an onsite interim status or permitted TSDF
- an off-site designated facility
- When a facility has equipment that discharges hazardous wastes to attached containers (i.e. photo processing), the containers that collect such wastes have to be in compliance with the SAA/SAP regulations even if the discharging unit is not regulated under RCRA, the attached containers that collect hazardous wastes from the equipment must be in compliance with the SAA/SAP regulations, if those containers collect wastes that are listed or characteristic hazardous wastes.
LQG Emergency Response
- The LQG training program must be directed by a person trained in hazardous waste management procedures and include instruction which teaches facility personnel hazardous waste management procedures (including contingency plan implementation) relevant to the positions in which they are employed.
- The LQG training program must be designed to ensure that facility personnel are able to respond effectively to emergencies by familiarizing them with emergency procedures, emergency equipment, and emergency systems, including where applicable:
- procedures for using, inspecting, repairing, and replacing facility emergency and monitoring equipment
- key parameters for automatic waste feed cut-off systems
- communications or alarm systems
- response to fires or explosions
- response to ground-water contamination incidents
- shutdown of operations.
NOTE: For facility employees that receive emergency response training pursuant to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations 29 CFR 1910.120(p)(8) and 1910.120(q), the LQG is not required to provide separate emergency response training, provided that the overall facility training meets all the requirements listed above.
- Personnel must successfully complete the required training within 6 mo after the date of their employment or assignment to the facility, or to a new position at the facility, whichever is later.
- Training must be reviewed annually.
NOTE: Regulations do not require training of personnel working in SAPs. Personnel that have access to or work in central accumulation areas (i.e. 90-day storage area), including those that move hazardous waste from a SAA/SAP to the 90-day storage area, must be trained. As the ones actually generating hazardous waste, however, personnel working in SAA/SAPs need to be familiar enough with the chemicals with which they are working to know when they have generated a hazardous waste so that it will be managed in accordance with the RCRA regulations.
LQGs Receiving Hazardous Waste from VSQGs
LQGs are required to have at least one emergency coordinator who is either on the premises or on call at all times with the responsibility of coordinating all emergency response measures. The concept of "on call" is explained as being "available to respond to an emergency by reaching the facility within a short period of time."
The following information must be posted next to telephones or in areas directly involving the generation and accumulation of hazardous waste:
- name and emergency telephone number of emergency coordinator
- location of fire extinguishers and spill control materials
- location of fire alarms (if present)
- telephone number of fire department unless the facility has a direct alarm.
LQGs are required to have at least attempted to make arrangements with the local police department, fire department, other emergency response teams, emergency response contractors, equipment suppliers and local hospitals, taking into account the types and quantities of hazardous wastes handled at the facility. (NOTE: Arrangements may be made with the Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), if it is determined to be the appropriate organization with which to make arrangements.)
As part of attempting to make these arrangements with the local fire department, the LQG must determine the potential need for the services of the local police department, other emergency response teams, emergency response contractors, equipment suppliers and local hospitals. This includes the LQG familiarizing the necessary organizations with the layout of the facility, the properties of hazardous waste handled at the facility and associated hazards, places where facility personnel would normally be working, entrances to roads inside the facility, and possible evacuation routes as well as the types of injuries or illnesses that could result from fires, explosions, or releases at the facility.
Where more than one police or fire department might respond to an emergency, the LQG must attempt to make arrangements designating primary emergency authority to a specific fire or police department, and arrangements with any others to provide support to the primary emergency authority.
(NOTE: A facility possessing 24-h response capabilities may seek a waiver from the authority having jurisdiction (AHJ) over the fire code within the facility's state or locality as far as needing to make arrangements with the local fire department as well as any other organization necessary to respond to an emergency, provided that the waiver is documented in the operating record.)
If a LQG is receiving hazardous waste from a VSQG under the control of the same person, the LQG must have notified EPA at least thirty (30) days prior to receiving the first shipment from a VSQG using EPA Form 8700–12.
The LQG must maintain records of shipments for 3 yr from the date the hazardous waste was received from the VSQG and the records must identify the name, site address, and contact information for the VSQG and include a description of the hazardous waste received, including the quantity and the date the waste was received.
The LQG labels the container or unit received from the VSQG with the date accumulation started (i.e., the date the hazardous waste was received from the VSQG). If the LQG is consolidating incoming hazardous waste from a VSQG with either its own hazardous waste or with hazardous waste from other VSQGs, the LQG must label each container or unit with the earliest date any hazardous waste in the container was accumulated on site.
NOTE: ''Control,'' for the purposes of this issue, means the power to direct the policies of the generator, whether by the ownership of stock, voting rights, or otherwise, except that contractors who operate generator facilities on behalf of a different person shall not be deemed to ''control'' such generators.)
When closing a waste accumulation unit, the LQG must do one of the following:
- place a notice in the operating record within 30 days after closure identifying the location of the unit within the facility, or
- meet the closure performance standards for container, tank, and containment building waste accumulation units or for drip pads.
When closing the facility, a LQG must notify EPA using form 8700-12 as follows:
- no later than 30 days prior to closing the facility
- within 90 days after closing the facility that it has complied with the closure performance standards.
At closure, the LQG must meet the following closure performance standards for container, tank systems, and containment building waste accumulation units:
- minimizes the need for further maintenance by controlling, minimizing, or eliminating, to the extent necessary to protect human health and the environment, the post-closure escape of hazardous waste, hazardous constituents, leachate, contaminated run-off, or hazardous waste decomposition products to the ground or surface waters or to the atmosphere
- removes or decontaminates all contaminated equipment, structures and soil and any remaining hazardous waste residues from waste accumulation units including containment system components (pads, liners, etc.), contaminated soils and subsoils, bases, and structures and equipment contaminated with waste, unless 40 CFR 261.3(d) concerning samples applies
- any hazardous waste generated in the process of closing either the generator's facility or unit(s) accumulating hazardous waste are managed according to regulatory requirements, including removing any hazardous waste contained in these units within 90 days of generating it and managing these wastes in a RCRA Subtitle C hazardous waste permitted treatment, storage and disposal facility or interim status facility.
If the generator demonstrates that any contaminated soils and wastes cannot be practicably removed or decontaminated, then the waste accumulation unit is considered to be a landfill and the generator must close the waste accumulation unit and perform post-closure care in accordance with the closure and post-closure care requirements that apply to landfills (40 CFR 265.310). In addition, for the purposes of closure, post-closure, and financial responsibility, such a waste accumulation unit is then considered to be a landfill, and the generator must meet all of the requirements for landfills specified in subparts G and H of 40 CFR 265
If the facility cannot meet the closure performance standards they must notify EPA using form 8700-12 that it will close as a landfill under 40 CFR 265.310 in the case of a container, tank or containment building unit(s), or for a facility with drip pads, notify using form 8700-12 that it will close under the standards of 40 CFR 265.445(b).
A LQG may request additional time to clean close, but it must notify EPA using form 8700-12 within 75 days after the date of initial notification to request an extension and provide an explanation as to why the additional time is required.
- LQGs must have an identification number and re-notifies EPA by March 1 of each even-numbered year using EPA Form 8700-12 (the renotification may be a part of the biennial report)
- LQGs must submit a biennial report using EPA Form 8700–13 A/B.
- LQGs must use manifest when sending waste offsite for disposal of recycling.
- LQGs maintain a copy of each signed manifest for 3 yr or until the LQG receives a signed copy from the designated facility which received the waste. Then, the returned signed copy is retained as a record for at least 3 yr from the date the waste was accepted by the initial transporter.
- LQGs are required to keep records of waste analyses, tests, and waste determinations for 3 yr.
- If the waste being disposed of is restricted from land disposal, the manifest files should contain a copy of the LDR notice.
- Documentation of the weekly inspection of the central accumulation area (i.e., 90-day storage area).
- LQGs must have a contingency plan that is designed to minimize hazards to human health or the environment from fires, explosions, or any unplanned sudden or nonsudden release of hazardous waste or hazardous waste constituents to air, soil, or surface water.
- A record of the time, date, and details of any incident that requires implementing the contingency plan.
- The job title for each position at the facility related to hazardous waste management, and the name of the employee filling each job.
- A written job description for each position listed (NOTE: This description may be consistent in its degree of specificity with descriptions for other similar positions in the same company location or bargaining unit, but must include the requisite skill, education, or other qualifications, and duties of facility personnel assigned to each position).
- A written description of the type and amount of both introductory and continuing training that will be given to each person filling a listed position.
- Records that document that the required training or job experience has been given to, and completed by, facility personnel.
- LQGS must records documenting the arrangements with the local fire department as well as any other organization necessary to respond to an emergency and the documentation includes documentation in the operating record that either confirms such arrangements actively exist or, in cases where no arrangements exist, confirms that attempts to make such arrangements were made.
Summary of State Requirements
States may require additional equipment at the 90-day storage area.
States may define what terms like "at or near" mean in relation to SAPs.
State-by-state guidance concerning hazardous waste can be found at ENVCAP's Hazardous Waste Resource Locator.
Laws and Statutes
The Resources Conservation and Recovery Act, Subtitle C
40 CFR 260
Hazardous Waste Management System: General
40 CFR 262
Standards Applicable to Generators of Hazardous Waste
40 CFR 264
Standards for Owners and Operators of Hazardous Waste Treatment, Storage and Disposal Facilities
40 CFR 265
Interim Status Standards for Owners and Operators of Hazardous Waste Treatment, Storage and Disposal Facilities
40 CFR 266
Standards for the Management of Specific Hazardous Wastes and Specific Types of Hazardous Waste Management Facilities
40 CFR 268
Land Disposal Restrictions
40 CFR 270
EPA Administered Programs: The Hazardous Waste Permit Program
State Hazardous Waste Guidance
State-by-State information on hazardous waste.
State RCRA Contacts