Environmental Protection

EPA Seeks to Align Hazwaste Rules with Those of OECD

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is proposing revisions to certain regulatory requirements for hazardous waste shipments between countries to ensure that recovery is done in an environmentally sound and economically efficient manner, according to a Sept. 19 press release.

The changes would make the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act's (RCRA) hazardous waste transboundary shipment regulations more consistent with those of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Hazardous waste is often shipped between countries for recovery. EPA has established an extensive set of regulations under RCRA governing the shipment of hazardous waste within the United States. Additionally, the United States participates in a number of bilateral waste agreements between countries and in the multilateral waste agreement controlling the shipment of hazardous waste for recovery between OECD Member countries.

Specifically, this rule proposes to revise:

• Existing RCRA regulation regarding the transboundary movement of hazardous wastes for recovery among countries belonging to the OECD to conform to legally required revisions made by the OECD;

• RCRA regulations for spent lead-acid batteries to add export notification and consent requirements;

• Hazardous waste import requirements; and

•The address to which export exception reports are to be sent.

Comments will be accepted for 60 days following publication in the Federal Register, which is expected by Oct. 1.

More information is available at http://www.epa.gov/epawaste/hazard/international/oecd-slab-rule.htm.

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