Immediate Effects of New Air Quality Standards Posted on March 12, 2013 by Scott C. Dunsmore
Question: I saw that the EPA published a final rule revising the ambient air quality standard for particulate matter and that the new standard is effective on March 18, 2013. Will this immediately affect New Source Review applications?
Answer: Some aspects of this final rule will have an immediate impact on New Source Review (NSR) permitting, and other aspects will impact air quality control regions in the future.
The EPA published a final rule on January 15, 2013 that revised the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) at 40 CFR Part 50 for fine particulates. Fine particulates are those with a diameter of less than or equal to 2.5 µm. The rule lowered the annual health standard from 15 µg/m3 to 10 µg/m3.
In order to determine the full impact on the NSR program, states must evaluate whether their air quality control regions (AQCR) will meet the new annual limit. States must submit their recommended attainment/non-attainment determinations to the EPA by December 2013. The EPA will evaluate these recommendations and publish its final determinations in December 2014. The resulting designations are scheduled to take effect in early 2015 and will appear as a final rule in the Federal Register.
Newly Designated Non-Attainment Areas
A change in designation from attainment to non-attainment in a given AQCR may result in many stationary sources meeting the definition of a “major” source of fine particulates. The New Source Review program has different definitions for “major stationary sources,” depending on the air quality status in the region of the stationary source. For some stationary sources, a change of designation may shift the default potential-to-emit threshold from > 250 tons/year in the “attainment” definition to the standard threshold in the “non-attainment” rules (> 100 tons/year). So, it will be important for existing stationary sources that emit particulates to look for the final determinations, especially if the AQCR has been re-designated as a non-attainment area.
Because many existing minor sources may now be re-designated as major sources, these newly regulated major sources will face a higher likelihood of needing NSR pre-construction permits for future “major modifications,” as defined at 40 CFR 51.165.
PSD Permit Applications
For new or existing major stationary sources of particulates in AQCRs that are currently designated as being in attainment with the NAAQS, there will be a more immediate impact on future modifications. Under the Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) program, which governs attainment areas, major sources must demonstrate that the construction project will not cause or contribute to a violation of the NAAQS or any maximum allowable pollution increase (i.e., the region’s allowable increment).
This demonstration is typically based on the air quality standard in place when the pre-construction permit is issued. However, the EPA is grandfathering permit applications that were submitted by December 14, 2012 or for those sources for which a public notice for a draft permit was published before the effective date of this rule (March 18, 2013). The grandfathered sources will be allowed to make the demonstration based on the previous 2006 standard. All non-grandfathered new PSD applications will need to make the demonstration based on the new annual health standard.
For more information on the revised particulate matter standard, see the EPA’s website. For more information on the National Ambient Air Quality Standards and New Source Review permitting under the Clean Air Act, join Lion for the Complete Environmental Regulations Workshops. These workshops cover core requirements under all the EPA’s major programs, including the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Safe Drinking Water Act, FIFRA, TSCA, and more!
The Challenge of Fall Protection Posted on March 05, 2013 by Joel Gregier
For the past twenty years, fatalities related to falls have consistently ranked in the top four causes of workplace deaths. The Occupational Safety and Health Act requires employers to protect their employees from recognized hazards that may result in death or serious physical harm and to comply with OSHA standards. So which standards might the employer need to consider in addressing workplace fall protection?
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires employers in General Industry to first address safeguards to the physical structures and devices within the workplace, and then use personal protective equipment for employees when they are unable to completely control the hazards through engineering or administrative methods.
Fall protection standards for physical structures are located under the “Walking and Working Surfaces” standards [29 CFR 1910, Subpart D]. These standards cover floor and wall openings/holes, elevated platforms, fixed stairs, and fixed ladders. For each work surface, OSHA has established minimum construction requirements for safeguards such as railings, handrails, and toe boards. The goals of these standards are to minimize:
- Employee falls, and
- Objects falling on employees from surfaces above their heads
General Fall Protection Rules
As a general rule, openings and platforms 4 feet or more above floor-level, or fixed stairs with 4 or more risers, must be constructed with railings and/or hand rails. The Walking and Working Surfaces standards provide specific instructions regarding the construction of these structures.
Toe boards must be installed on platforms and around openings whenever:
- Persons can pass beneath the platform, or
- The platform is above moving machinery, or
- There is equipment below the platform with which falling materials could create a hazard.
Also, open-sided floors and platforms require railings and toe boards, even if the elevation is under 4 feet, if they are above or adjacent to hazardous locations (e.g., dangerous equipment).
Unconventional Elevated Work Surfaces
Because there are many unconventional elevated working surfaces (i.e., conveyors, tops of machinery, and other structures not normally considered “walking and working” surfaces), OSHA clarifies what it means by “platforms” at STD 1-1.13. According to this directive, OSHA considers something a platform, and therefore subject to the platform guarding standards, if employees will work on it on a “predictable and regular basis.” “Predictable and regular” covers functions such as, but not limited to, inspections, service, repair, and maintenance that are performed at least once every two weeks or for a total of 4 man-hours during any sequential 4-week period. For instance, if 2 employees work for 2 hours each (4 man-hours total) within a 4-week period, that elevated surface would be considered a “platform.”
Personal Protection Equipment
As a general rule, personal protective equipment (PPE) must be provided, used, and maintained in reliable conditions whenever hazards in the workplace can cause injury or impairment from physical contact [29 CFR 1910.132(a)]. If, after securing the workplace by installing mandatory safeguards, employees are still at risk from falling hazards, then employers must select, provide, and train their employees in the proper use and care of their personal protective equipment.
The General Industry Standards do not have standards for specific fall protection PPE. However, there are specifications for certain fall prevention and fall arrest systems within the Construction Standards [29 CFR 1926). While these standards may not directly apply to non-construction related practices, they may serve as a basis for demonstrating the general requirements at 29 CFR 1910.132. In addition, there may be consensus standards that pertain to a workplace scenario that may provide assistance to the employer in assuring that fall protection PPE has been evaluated and implemented properly under the General Industry Standards.
10 Hour Training You Can Trust
Learn the OSHA mandates that apply to your facility with Lion’s comprehensive 10 Hour General Industry Online Course. The course has been updated to include OSHA’s new GHS rules, and students gain the critical knowledge and tools needed to ensure site compliance, protect employees, and maintain productivity.
What other OSHA safety and protection regulations do you interact with day-to-day? Share on below.
References: OSHA Instruction STD 1-1.13, April 16, 1984. 29 CFR 1910.23(c), 1910.132
Managing Hazardous Waste as Used Oil Posted on February 26, 2013 by Lion Staff
In general, the EPA does not consider used oils to be hazardous waste. In establishing proper management standards for these wastes, the EPA presumed that recycling, from re-refining to burning as fuel, would occur. The used oil rules at 40 CFR 279 are less burdensome than the hazardous waste regulations (40 CFR 260-270). In some circumstances, the EPA even allows certain mixtures of used oil and hazardous waste to be managed under the less stringent used oil rules. Recycling used oil under Part 279 has great advantages and it is worth considering which used oil/hazardous waste mixtures can take advantage of these regulations.
What Is Used Oil
The U.S. EPA defines used oil as “oil that has been refined from crude oil, or any synthetic oil, that has been used and as a result of such use is contaminated by physical or chemical impurities” [40 CFR 279.1]. Though not explicitly stated in this definition, the EPA’s used oil regulations apply to lubricating, hydraulic, cutting, cooling, and other similar oils—but not to fuel oils.
Types of Mixtures
Used oil and hazardous waste mixtures fall into two categories: used oils that are mixed with listed hazardous waste (i.e., wastes described at 40 CFR 261.31—261.33), or used oils mixed with characteristic-only hazardous wastes. The EPA prohibits the management of mixtures of used oil and listed waste from management under 40 CFR 279. These mixtures must be managed under the hazardous waste management requirements [40 CFR 279.10(b)(1)(i)]. So, it is mixtures of used oil and certain characteristic hazardous wastes that may take advantage of the used oil standards.
When Used Oil and Hazardous Waste Can Be Managed as Used Oil
- The hazardous waste is ignitable-only (D001), but is not ignitable when mixed with used oil, even if the resulting mixture exhibits some other hazardous waste characteristic(s)
- The hazardous waste was characteristic-only, and the mixture displays no characteristics.
Used Oil Mixed With Ignitable Hazardous Waste
An ignitable hazardous waste (D001) is a hazardous waste that exhibits no characteristics other than ignitibility, and/or is listed only for ignitibility.
A mixture of used oil and ignitable hazardous waste may be managed as used oil, as long as the mixture is not ignitable, even if the mixture exhibits other hazardous waste characteristic(s) (i.e., toxicity for heavy metals) [40 CFR 279.10(b)(2)(iii)].
Used Oil Mixed With “Characteristic” Hazardous Waste
A mixture of a characteristic hazardous waste and used oil can be managed as used oil as long as the mixture does not exhibit any characteristic [40 CFR 279.10(b)(2)(ii)].
Characteristic-only hazardous wastes include those wastes listed on the F-, K-, P-, or U-lists solely because they exhibit a hazardous characteristic (i.e. ignitibility (I), corrosivity (C), reactivity (R), or toxicity (E)).
There are approximately 30 listed wastes found in 40 CFR 261.31—261.33 that the EPA has listed solely on the basis of the waste exhibiting one or more of the characteristics at 40 CFR 261, Subpart C. In their descriptions at 40 CFR 261, Subpart D, these listed wastes are followed by one or more of the following hazard codes: I, C, R, or E.
Special Circumstances for Conditionally Exempt Small Quantity Generators
As established at 40 CFR 261.5, Conditionally Exempt Small Quantity Generators (CESQGs) are largely exempt from RCRA hazardous waste regulations. Any hazardous waste, including acutely hazardous, or toxic wastes generated by a CESQG may be mixed with and managed as used oil, even if the resulting mixture exhibits hazardous waste characteristics. [40 CFR 261.5(j)].
Check Your State Regulations
Used oil recycling is one area of waste management regulations where State laws, regulations, and policies can vary widely from Federal standards. Before mixing used oil and hazardous waste, check with your state’s EPA to make sure the Agency approves your procedures. States may prohibit one or more of these mixes or impose additional requirements for recycling any/all used oils.
Mixing hazardous waste and used oil has many advantages for generators. As long as the rules at 40 CFR Part 279 are followed, mixtures of certain types of hazardous waste and used oil are exempt from many of the most stringent RCRA regulations, saving generators time and money.
Learn to take advantage of other available reliefs from the RCRA hazardous waste rules at Lion’s Hazardous Waste Recycling Reliefs Webinar, presented live on April 23 from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM ET!
How has mixing used oils been a relief to you and your facility? Share below.
How to Classify Hazmat That Changes Its Characteristics Posted on February 19, 2013 by Lion Staff
Question: I have to ship some solid phosphoric acid powder. The Hazardous Material Table says it’s a Class 8—Corrosive hazardous material. I thought that Class 8 was only for corrosive liquids. What’s up with that?
Answer: A material is a Class 8 hazmat if it fails the tests given in 49 CFR 173.137. The procedures for those tests are calibrated for liquids and are not suitable for solids.
In general, you classify a hazmat based on its properties at the time you offer it for transportation. But there’s one exception to this principle—when a solid material may become a liquid during transportation, either by melting or absorbing moisture from the atmosphere, and that liquid would be a Class 8 corrosive, then the solid must be classified and otherwise managed as a Class 8 corrosive hazmat.
“A liquid, or a solid which may become liquid during transportation, that has a severe corrosion rate on steel or aluminum based on the criteria in 173.137(c)(2) is also a corrosive material.” [49 CFR 173.136(a)]
An Example of Classifying Changing Characteristics
Take phosphoric acid for example. At room temperature, phosphoric acid is a crystalline solid, but its melting point is around 100° F. During the normal course of intermodal transportation, ambient temperatures can range from -40° to over 200° F.
This means it’s very possible for a consignment of solid phosphoric acid powder to liquefy during transport. When in a liquid phase phosphoric acid can corrode metal packagings and/or vehicles. Therefore, you must treat the solid powder as if it were a corrosive hazmat, even though it doesn’t quite meet the definition given.
In other words, if you ship a solid material that may become a Class 8 corrosive liquid during transport, it should be classified and named accordingly. So, although your material may not exhibit the characteristics of a Class 8 corrosive hazardous material when you ship it, it is correct to classify and name it as a Class 8 hazmat and package it accordingly.
How to Pack Meltable Solids
When packing solid hazardous materials that may become liquid during transport (i.e., meltable solids), there are special rules you must follow to accommodate this potential change in phase. [49 CFR 173.24 (a)(b)(3)] Specifically, the packaging must be able to contain the liquid in addition to providing enough absorbent material in the event of any damage or leakage with regard to inner packaging.
Learn all the DOT’s rules for classifying, packaging, marking, labeling, and documenting your hazmat shipments in full compliance with the Hazardous Materials Regulations at Lion’s Hazardous Materials Transportation Certification Workshop. For the full schedule, visit Lion.com.
What other unique hazmat classifying or packaging rules have you come across? Share below.
Greenhouse Gas Reports Due March 31st! Posted on February 12, 2013 by Lion Staff
The 2013 submission deadline for 40 CFR 98, more commonly called “the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule,” is fast approaching. Unlike 2011 and 2012, in which the reporting deadlines were pushed back to September due to technology issues, this year the EPA requires reports be submitted by the March 31st date codified in the regulations.
In 2009, the U.S. EPA issued the Mandatory Reporting of Greenhouse Gases Rule in order to collect accurate information to inform future policy decisions. The rulemaking was a response to Congress’ Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2008, which authorized the EPA to require GHG emitters to inventory and report emissions. Details on who must report, what must be reported, and what technology should be used to monitor and collect GHG emissions data can be found at 40 CFR Part 98.
Greenhouse Gas Reporting Requirements
The first official reporting year for Greenhouse Gas emissions was 2011. A number of major industry sectors are subject to mandatory reporting, namely electric utilities, major manufacturers, the petrochemical industry, mines, and certain other facilities that produce at least 25,000 tonnes* per year of CO2 or CO2 equivalent emissions. A “CO2 equivalent” or “Co2e” value is calculated by determining the potential of an emitted greenhouse gas to contribute to global warming, as compared to carbon dioxide.
Facilities must report when GHG emissions exceed 25,000 tonnes of CO2e per year. The six major greenhouse gases are:
- Carbon dioxide (CO2)
- Methane (CH4)
- Nitrous oxide (N2O)
- Sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)
- Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)
- Perfluorocarbons (PFCs)
- And other fluorinated greenhouse gases defined at 40 CFR Section 98.6
The EPA’s complete list of facilities who must report includes those that meet the above criteria, as well as some others:
- Any facility which is in a source category listed in 40 CFR 98.2(a)(1), regardless of the actual amount of GHGs emitted,
- Any facility which is in a source category listed in 40 CFR 98.2(a)(2), if it emitted 25,000 tonnes of CO2e gases or more in 2012,
- Any facility which does not meet the previous two criteria but has stationary combustion sources with a 30mmBTU/hr rating or greater, and which emitted 25,000 tonnes or more of CO2e gases in 2012 (per 40 CFR 98.2(a)(3)), or
- Greenhouse gas suppliers (40 CFR 98, Subparts LL through QQ).
Submitting Reports Using the e-GGRT
Reports must be submitted electronically using the e-GGRT (Electronic Greenhouse Gas Reporting Tool). Paper submissions are not accepted. Facilities must register on the e-GRRT site and then submit the one-time Electronic Signature Agreement (ESA). Once the ESA is approved, registrants return to the e-GRRT site to complete registration and then be able to report. For first time submitters, the process of setting up an account for the e-GRRT system may take a few weeks, so do not wait until the March 1 deadline to register.
While research & development activities are not included in calculating emissions totals (40 CFR 98.2(a)(5)), in general once a facility meets the applicability under Part 98, it must continue to submit annual reports, even if it no longer meets the reporting thresholds. A facility can petition to cease annual reporting if it meets one of the following criteria:
- Emit less than 25,000 tonnes CO2e for five consecutive years,
- Emit less than 15,000 tonnes CO2e for three consecutive years, or
- Cease the GHG-emitting process / operations.
The facility must submit a written petition to the EPA by March 31 of the following year and must retain supporting records for at least three years. [40 CFR 98.2(i)]
What other difficulties do you face when filling out Greenhouse Gas Reports?
Get all the information you need to comply with EPA’s major programs at Lion’s Complete Environmental Regulations Public Workshops. Learn the latest rules, including, Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, as well as Greenhouse Gas Reporting, Superfund, and EPCRA.
*1 tonnes, or metric ton, is equivalent to 2,204.6lbs.
Transitioning to OSHA’s New GHS Rules Posted on February 05, 2013 by Lion Staff
Q:I am in charge of overseeing my company’s transition to OSHA’s new GHS Hazard Communication Standard. How much of the standard will be changing?
A:The overhaul to OSHA’s Hazard Communication System (HCS) has caused anxiety nationwide in many industries since the rulemaking was announced—but while many aspects of hazard communication will change, the major thrust of “HazCom” scope and application will remain the same.
OSHA’s adoption of the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) brings major changes for any employer whose personnel handle hazardous chemicals at work; there are new chemical classification criteria to follow, revised markings and labels to recognize, and new 16-section Safety Data Sheets to fill out.
Intent of the OSHA HazCom Standard
The intent of OSHA’s HazCom standard has not changed. OSHA requires employers to alert personnel to hazards in the workplace through container marking and labeling, documentation, and effective training. These requirements have always been a part of OSHA’s Hazard Communication Standard, found at 29 CFR 1910.1200.
Just as before the GHS rulemaking, chemical manufacturers/importers must classify “hazardous chemicals,” accurately label containers of chemicals they ship out, and clearly document those hazards on paper. The employers’ obligation to create a written program of training and workplace communication still stands.
Most of the exclusions under the old HazCom rule also still apply. For instance, certain types of chemicals need not be labeled, such as food and drugs subject to FDA labeling and pesticides subject to FIFRA labeling. Still exempt from HazCom are RCRA-regulated hazardous wastes, personal medication taken by employees, and biological hazards.
Though the “HazCom 2012″ GHS initiative will require more disclosure with respect to chemicals manufactured, handled, and shipped, trade secrets are still protected under an exemption [29 CFR 1910.1200(i)].
GHS HazCom Training Options
To help the regulated community navigate the new GHS requirements, Lion offers three training options. With training for all levels you can ensure that all employees are in compliance by the December 1, 2013 deadline. Click the following links to learn more about Lion’s GHS Courses: Preparing for OSHA’s New GHS Rule Webinar, Managing Hazard Communication Online Course, and Hazard Communication Online Course.
How will the new GHS rules affect you and your facility? Share below.
Understanding Your Generator Status Posted on January 29, 2013 by Lion Staff
Any person who produces hazardous waste or causes hazardous waste to become subject to regulation is a generator of hazardous waste. Waste can be produced by industrial processes or through recycling and waste treatment. Wastes can become subject to regulation without actually being produced through the closure of a process or facility or the cleanup of an abandoned site or accidental release.
A “person” can be an individual, but more generally, the term applies to a facility or site. The amount of hazardous waste generated at a site during a calendar month determines its generator status.
While the term “generator status” doesn’t actually appear in the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) or its implementing regulations, it is used by the EPA and others to refer to the amount of hazardous waste generated at a facility and the particular regulations that apply to that facility and its waste.
There are three categories of generator status: large quantity generator, small quantity generator, and conditionally exempt small quantity generator.
Amount Per Month
Large Quantity Generator (LQG)
1,000 kg or more
(>1 kg acute hazardous waste)
40 CFR 262.34(a)
Small Quantity Generator (SQG)
>100 kg or < = 1,000 kg
40 CFR 262.34(d)
Conditionally Exempt Small Quantity Generator (CESQG)
100 kg or less
(1 kg or less acute hazardous waste)
40 CFR 261.5
Knowing Your Generator Status
Knowing your generator status is the most important thing you can do under RCRA, because the more waste you generate, the more rules you have to follow.
Written Training Plan/Records
Written Contingency Plan
Large Quantity Generator (LQG)
Small Quantity Generator (SQG)
Conditionally Exempt Small Quantity Generator (CESQG)
Due to the Federalized nature of RCRA, not every State-level implementing authority recognizes the SQG or CESQG provisions, and may not extend every relief to every facility. As always, check your state-level agency rules/policies before making major policy changes.
Changing Generator Status
Generator status is based on the amount of waste generated over the course of a month. If a facility generates 1,000 kg or more of hazardous waste in a month, then ALL of the waste generated that month must be managed as LQG waste. Any waste generated in previous months can be managed under the rules that applied in those months.
The original regulations don’t account for the possibility of status change, but many State and regional authorities have their own uncodified policies and procedures for handling temporary or permanent change in generator status.
Keeping Good Records
On March 1 of every even-numbered year, every facility that treats, stores, or disposes of hazardous waste and every large quantity generator must file a Biennial Report (EPA FORM 8700-13A) on their hazardous waste management activities for the previous year.
This means that if a facility generates a large quantity of hazardous waste (1,000 kg or more) during even a single month of 2013, then it must file a report in 2014 for all of the waste generated the previous year—not just for the waste generated in that month. The report must describe all the hazardous waste that was generated at the facility, how much was generated, and what happened to it. A best practice is to keep good records of your waste generation every month, even if you’re normally a small quantity generator.
Ensure you are always in compliance with accumulation rules with effective RCRA training. At Lion’s Hazardous/Toxic Waste Management Workshops, you’ll learn how to classify hazardous waste, determine your on-site storage options, count hazardous wastes, and more.
What do you find to be your biggest problem in determining generator status? Share comments below.
New Requirements for Limited Quantities & Consumer Commodities Posted on January 22, 2013 by Lion Staff
Question: Settle a bet. My co-worker says a limited quantity hazmat package doesn’t need shipping papers; I say that exception is only for consumer commodities. Who’s right?
Answer: You’re both a little bit right, and you’re both a little bit wrong.
In the past, only those shipments of hazardous materials packed in limited quantities AND reclassified/renamed as ORM-D/Consumer Commodity were exempt from shipping papers. Until recently, every other limited quantity package still required shipping papers for any mode of transportation.
However, PHMSA recently rewrote the rules for packaging and shipping hazardous materials packed in limited quantities, extending to them the additional reliefs from regulation (including from shipping papers) that previously only applied to ORM-D Consumer Commodity materials.
On January 19, 2011 (76 FR 3308), PHMSA promulgated the final rule “Harmonization with the United Nations Recommendations, International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code, and the International Civil Aviation Organization Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air” [HM-215K]. This rulemaking concluded over five years of effort to harmonize the Hazardous Material Regulations (HMR) with evolving international standards for limited quantity shipping.
When HM-215K went into effect on January 1, 2011, it:
- Created a new symbol for markings for limited quantity packages,
- Set a schedule for the phase-out of the ORM-D classification,
- Created a new ID8000//Consumer Commodity//Class 9//PG II classification for transport by air, and
- Extended to (almost) all limited quantity packages the various additional regulatory reliefs that traditionally only applied to ORM-D materials.
Old Consumer Commodity Packaging
If the contents of the package were: “…packaged and distributed in a form intended or suitable for sale through retail sales agencies or instrumentalities for consumption by individuals for purposes of personal care or household use,” [49 CFR 171.8] once it met the criteria above as a limited quantity, it could be further relieved from regulation, and:
- Reassigned to hazard class ORM-D
- Renamed CONSUMER COMMODITY
- Marked with the words “ORM-D CONSUMER COMMODITY”
- Instead of the original Proper Shipping Name and/or identification number
- Not labeled as hazmat
- Not documented as hazmat on shipping papers
- Except for transport by aircraft as ORM-D-AIR
- Eligible for additional relief from regulation by 49 CFR 173.156, 173.306, 175.75, and elsewhere
New Limited Quantity Packaging
The new system made only incidental changes to the types and amounts of hazardous materials authorized for exception from regulation as limited quantities. Under the new system, in place since January 1, 2011, once a hazardous material were to be packed as a limited quantity, it would:
- Be marked with the new limited quantity marking (instead of the Proper Shipping Name or identification number)
- Not require hazmat shipping papers
- Except for transport by aircraft or vessel, or
- If it were a hazardous waste, hazardous substance, or regulated marine pollutant
- Be immediately eligible for additional relief from regulation by 49 CFR 173.156, 173.306, 175.75, and elsewhere
New Consumer Commodity Packaging
While PHMSA is phasing out the hazard classification ORM-D and has already eliminated ORM-D-AIR, which were only ever used for hazardous materials renamed CONSUMER COMMODITY, the Agency has created a unique identification number ID8000 for use with that Proper Shipping Name. The ID8000, CONSUMER COMMODITY, Class 9, PG II designation and the packing instructions at 49 CFR 173.167 are intended for use only for certain air shipments. The universe of goods eligible for reclassification as ID8000 is much narrower than those that were eligible for ORM-D or ORM-D-AIR. These provisions more closely match international air regulations for aircraft consumer commodities. See ICAO TI/IATA DGR PI Y963.
ORM-D Phase-Out Period
PHMSA originally proposed a 2-year phase-out period for the ORM-D classification (1 year for ORM-D-AIR) and for the traditional limited quantity markings (UN# in diamond, etc.). The last day to use the ORM-D-AIR classification was December 31, 2012. But, after a series of hearings and appeals, PHMSA has extended the transitional period for hazmat packages marked ORM-D Consumer Commodity until December 31, 2020. Additionally, the square-on-point with ID# can continue to be used until December 31, 2014.
Recent extensions: January 7, 2013 78 FR 1101
Original Rule: January 19, 2011 (76 FR 3308)
Prepare your team for the DOT’s new limited quantity and consumer commodity rules with Lion’s Shipping Limited Quantities and Consumer Commodities online course. Available 24/7, this easy-to-use online course will prepare your team to package, mark, label, and prepare shipping papers for shipments of limited quantities and consumer commodities for transport by ground, air, and ocean!
Prepare Your Tier II Reports Now: March Deadline Posted on January 15, 2013 by Lion Staff
It’s that time of year again: the March 1 deadline for submitting the Tier I or Tier II Chemical Inventory Report under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) is fast approaching.
Tier Reporting Requirements
You must comply with these reporting requirements if your facility holds a threshold planning quantity (TPQ) of any hazardous chemical.
Defining a Hazardous Chemical
Hazardous chemical, in this context, “means any hazardous chemical as defined under 29 CFR 1910.1200(c)….” [40 CFR370.66] If the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires you to have a Safety Data Sheet (SDS) for a substance, it’s a hazardous chemical. The most common chemical hazards are explosives, flammables, poisons, corrosives, reactive/unstable chemicals, and chronic health hazards (cancer-agents, mutagens, etc.).
Threshold Planning Quantities
The default TPQ for most substances is 10,000 lbs. or more at any time during the year. For certain extremely hazardous substances designated at 40 CFR 355, Appendix A, the default TQP is 500 lbs. or less. Higher TPQs apply to fuels stored in underground storage tanks at retail gas stations.
Believe it or not, while the chemical inventory report system is mandated and overseen by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, these reports don’t go directly to the EPA. They go to your State Emergency Response Commission (SERC), your community’s Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), and the local fire department (FD).
Different Types of Tier Reports
Section 311 of EPCRA technically requires facilities to provide a copy of an SDS for each chemical to the authorities, but in most cases, a list of chemicals is acceptable. Per Section 312 of the Act, facilities must also provide detailed information about the type and amount of hazardous chemicals they keep in inventory. The EPA offers two different means to comply with this mandate: the broad Tier I report and the more specific Tier II report. The Agency has left it up to each state to choose which one to require. At this point in time, most State authorities require facilities to report their chemical inventories using the Tier II form, and through electronic rather than paper systems.
Find Out More
To find out how to report in your state, see the EPA’s index of SERCs.
For more information from EPA on hazardous chemical inventory reporting, click here.
The full regulations for hazardous chemical inventory reporting are found in 40 CFR 370.
All EHS professionals who work with environmentally hazardous chemicals and substances are expected to know which rules apply to their operations. Learn your responsibilities under the EPA’s major programs, including EPCRA, the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, TSCA, FIFRA, and more, at Lion’s nationwide Complete Environmental Regulations workshops.
OSHA’s Yearly Summary of Injury and Illness Posted on January 08, 2013 by James Griffin
EHS managers nationwide have just three more weeks to complete and post their organizations’ annual OSHA 300-A Summary Forms. Formally known as the Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses, this form must be completed no later than February 1 and posted in “…a conspicuous place or places where notices to employees are customarily posted…” (29 CFR 1904.32).
The 300-A form must remain posted until at least April 30, and employers must ensure the form is not altered, defaced, or covered by other materials during that time.
300-A Form—What OSHA Requires
At the end of each calendar year, an employer must:
- Review the OSHA 300 Log (the Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses) to verify that the entries are complete and accurate, and correct any deficiencies identified;
- Create an annual summary of injuries and illnesses recorded on the OSHA 300 log;
- Certify the summary (by having a “company executive” examine it); and
- Post the annual summary.
There is no required procedure to follow or length of time you must spend reviewing the OSHA 300 Log. OSHA simply states that you must “…review the entries as extensively as necessary to make sure that they are complete and correct.” (29 CFR 1904.32)
Required Elements of Your 300-A
To complete the 300-A form, an employer must:
- Total the columns on the OSHA 300 Log (enter “0″ if no recordable cases);
- Enter the calendar year covered, the company’s name, establishment name, and establishment address;
- Enter the annual, average number of employees covered by the OSHA 300 Log; and
- Enter the total hours worked by all employees covered by the OSHA 300 Log.
If you are using an equivalent form other than the OSHA 300-A (as allowed by 29 CFR 1904.6(b)(4)), you must include the employee access and employer penalty statements found on the OSHA 300-A summary form.
Need help completing your 300-A? The Injury & Illness Recordkeeping and Reporting online course covers the required elements of an OSHA 300 log and provides guidance on reporting serious incidents to OSHA, deciding what incidents are “work-related,” and handling recurring cases. Visit Lion.com/OSHATraining for a full listing of Lion’s workplace health and safety training options.
IMO Releases New IMDG 2012 Edition Posted on December 18, 2012 by James Griffin
The 2012 Edition of the International Maritime Organization’s IMDG Code is now available! The voluntary, or “phase-in,” compliance period for the new Amendment 36-12 begins on January 1, 2013, and compliance with the new rules is mandatory starting January 1, 2014.
The new amendment includes a number of significant changes that will affect hazmat vessel shipping operations over the next two years. An overview of the most critical changes appears below.
New Marking Requirements
The new IMDG Code includes two new marking requirements that hazmat vessel shippers should prepare for:
- In the new IMDG Code, the IMO sets a mandatory minimum font size for package markings destined for vessel shipment.
- Already required on Intermediate Bulk Containers (IBCs), “stack load marks” will be required to be displayed on all large packagings as well.
The IMO reorganized a number of parts of the new IMDG Code, including a complete overhaul of Part 7. Part 7 comprises the rules for transport operations, such as segregating incompatible materials. While these rules apply most directly to transporters, shippers who package their own containers should take note of the changes to Part 7. Non-compliant packages are subject to fines as high as $75,000 per day, per violation by the U.S. DOT, and even a compliant shipping container can be subject to costly port delays if the materials within are packed in a way that makes it difficult to transport.
The IMO’s requirements for limited quantities of hazardous materials (Part 3.4) have also been reorganized, though the changes to the limited quantity rules for vessel shippers are minimal.
Also reorganized were the provisions for classifying marine pollutants. This section now conforms to the latest edition of the UN’s Globally Harmonized System (GHS) of classifying and labeling chemicals.
New and Expanded Rules
Amendment 36-12 includes a number of new and expanded provisions for shipping certain materials. Among these are:
- Used medical devices
- Chemicals under pressure
- Containers full of dry ice (and other similar conditioning/cooling materials)
- Charged capacitors
- Mercury in manufactured articles
- Krill meal
- Battery-powered vehicles
- Dangerous goods in machinery
- De minimis quantities of dangerous goods
Newly Authorized Packagings
The following package types are now acceptable for shipment by vessel: salvage cylinders; non-bulk metallic boxes; and, under certain circumstances, flexible and sheeted bulk packagings.
The IMO and the U.S. DOT require vessel shippers to complete training once every three years. Learn all the new changes and avoid costly port delays and fines with Lion’s multiple Vessel Shipper training options: Nationwide public workshops; live, instructor-led webinars; and convenient, 24/7 online courses make it easy to get the training you need!
How will these changes affect your vessel shipping operations? Share here.
The IMO and the U.S. DOT require vessel shippers to complete training once every three years. Learn all the new changes and avoid costly port delays and fines with Lion’s multiple Vessel Shipper training options: nationwide public workshops; live, instructor-led webinars; and convenient, 24/7 online courses make it easy to get the training you need!
Determining EPA Superfund Sites Posted on December 11, 2012 by James Griffin
On September 18, 2012, U.S. EPA added twelve new “Superfund” sites to the National Priority List (NPL) and proposed eight further additions.
The NPL is a list of U.S. sites affected by “uncontrolled hazardous substance releases…that are priorities for long-term remedial action and response” [40 CFR 300.5, emphasis added]
There is a multi-step process for EPA to add sites to the NPL. Before this process even begins, the first question that usually must be asked is whether an “immediate response” is needed to a spill or release. Once EPA determines that the site needs longer-term care, the following steps are taken:
- Preliminary Assessment (PA) and Site Inspection (SI): The site is inspected and subjected to a thorough preliminary assessment. Pathways of exposure, exposure targets, and the source and nature of the release are all investigated. Samples are taken and analyzed.
- Hazard Ranking System (HRS): Based on the results of the PA and SI, sites are classified in terms of the HRS. Due to limited Superfund Trust Fund resources, EPA focuses on the worst problems at the worst sites first. However, a site scoring high on the HRS does not necessarily mean immediate commencement of remedial work; current remediation work is not halted at one site just because a new site scores higher on the HRS.
- Remedial Investigation (RI) and Feasibility Study (FS): A Remedial Investigation is conducted to determine the appropriate clean-up alternatives for the site that would be protective of human health and the environment. This might include project scoping, data collection, risk assessment, treatability studies, and assessment of alternatives. The FS is conducted at the same time, to analyze the remedial actions themselves in light of technical, public health, institutional, economic and environmental considerations.
- Remedial Action Plan (RAP) and Record of Decision (ROD): A RAP is developed based on the results of the RI and FS and is documented in an ROD. The purpose of the ROD is to support the decision to implement the RAP by documenting factors such as the degree of protection to human health and cost-effectiveness.
- Remediation Once the RAP is developed, it is implemented and a number of technologies are implemented to clean up the site. Less pressing aspects of the RAP will not get immediate attention. Remediation can take years to complete.
- Deletion from the NPL: Once all activities and levels of treatment identified in the RAP have been completed and the site is determined to pose no further threat to human health and the environment along all pathways of exposure, a close-out report is submitted to U.S. EPA and the site is removed from the NPL. Once the site is removed from the list, a Final Deletion Notice is published in the Federal Register.
- Site Reuse/Redevelopment: US EPA’s goal is to make Superfund sites usable again. To this end, the Agency have set up an entire section on its website aimed at explaining how they partner with state and local organizations to ensure future use of a cleaned-up site is consistent with the remedy in place.
Including the September 18 additions, the NPL now includes 1313 sites across the U.S. The oldest Superfund sites in the nation have been on the NPL since 1983.
Are there any Superfund sites near you? The EPA maintains a complete list of NPL sites on its Web site here.
Displaying Holiday Lights Posted on December 04, 2012 by James Griffin
It’s time again to decorate for the holidays! Whether your holiday lights are red, green, blue, flashing, icicle-shaped, or still knotted in a ball in the storage room—there are several workplace lighting, electrical, and installation/wiring guidelines from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) you should be aware of before stringing up the decorations.
Lighting standards can be found at 29 CFR Part 1910, under the rules for electrical wiring installation. The rules, including regulations regarding grounding, wire size, and installation locations for permanent wiring can be found at §1910.304. Keep in mind that permanent wiring rules still apply regardless of the light source. For instance, OSHA standard 1910.304(c)(5) states that lights used outdoors must be placed below all live transformers, conductors, and any other electrical equipment unless adequate clearances and safeguards are provided.
At §1910.305, there are also rules for temporary lighting, which is where you will find specific standards for holiday lights. These requirements include, but are not limited to:
- All other requirements for permanent wiring still apply to temporary wiring (unless specifically modified in §1910.305(a)(2));
- The temporary lighting must be 600 volts, nominal, or less;
- Holiday lights may only be up for 90 days;
- Flexible cords and cables shall be protected from accidental damage, as might be caused, for example, by sharp corners, projections, and doorways or other pinch points;
- Cable assemblies and flexible cords and cables shall be supported in place at intervals that ensure that they will be protected from physical damage. Support shall be in the form of staples, cables ties, straps, or similar type fittings installed so as not to cause damage; and
- Specific rules for feeders and branch circuits.
For full requirements, check out 29 CFR 1910.305(a)(2).
Have a happy and safe holiday season!
How to Avoid Speculative Accumulation Posted on November 27, 2012 by James Griffin
Recycling hazardous waste is a great way to save the planet and your bottom line. The RCRA regulations include many provisions under which hazardous wastes can be legitimately recycled scattered throughout 40 CFR Part 261, Subpart A. When you recycle hazardous waste, you are exempt from the following regulations that apply to hazardous waste:
- Accumulation time limits,
- Regular inspections,
- Detailed containment standards,
- Treatment standards, and
- Manifesting requirements.
Because of the great advantages associated with recycling, some generators of hazardous waste attempt to avoid the expense and difficulty of complying with RCRA by falsely claiming that their wastes are being or will be recycled, when in fact no feasible means of recycling exist or when no recycling is actually occurring. One of the tools the Agency uses to combat these illegitimate claims of recycling is a concept called “speculative accumulation.”
Defining Speculative Accumulation
Speculative accumulation refers to false claims that wastes will be recycled and/or the indefinite storage of hazardous waste before recycling.
For a generator to prove that hazardous secondary materials are being legitimately recycled, and not being accumulated speculatively, the generator must establish that:
- The material is potentially recyclable and has a feasible means of being recycled; and
- During the calendar year, a certain weight or volume has been recycled or sent off site to be recycled.
For the accumulation of recyclable materials to be legitimate, both of these conditions must be met. If either of these conditions is not met, then the generator is accumulating hazardous waste speculatively and may be charged with numerous violations of RCRA.
Proof of Recycling Hazardous Materials
No matter what kind of recycling you were intending or the type of waste, if you accumulate it speculatively, the material loses its excluded status and turns back into hazardous waste.
Even if you’re not trying to evade RCRA, you might accidentally end up accumulating your recyclables speculatively.
The EPA created these rules to “mitigate the risk posed by facilities that over-accumulate hazardous secondary materials prior to recycling. The provision serves as a safety net, preventing recyclable materials that are not otherwise regulated under RCRA from being stored indefinitely and potentially causing environmental damage.” It is entirely the responsibility of the generator to establish that he is NOT accumulating waste speculatively, not for the EPA to prove the case. [40 CFR 261.2(f)]
So how does a generator prove that a material is potentially recyclable and has a feasible means of being recycled? The generator may show the EPA/State Inspector a contract with a recycler, letter of understanding, or a more formal tolling agreement. In addition, if the material is going to be recycled in an unusual manner, the generator may want to obtain technical specifications from the recycler or other documents to prove the recycling is legitimate.
How much, and in what timeframe, must the generator recycle in order to avoid speculative accumulation? The generator must know the volume or weight of the material to be recycled that is held in storage on January 1st of each year. The generator should document this inventory. By the end of the same year (December 31st), the generator must have recycled—or shipped off site for recycling—at least 75% of the material. A final inventory record, shipping papers, or an invoice can serve as proof of meeting this requirement.
What do you find to be the best practices to avoid speculative accumulation? Share here.
Prepare your facility for the new year with hazardous waste training that’s current, effective, and engaging. Sign up now for Lion’s 2013 Hazardous/Toxic Waste Management workshops, and be confident you’re in compliance with the latest rules!
What’s New for the IATA DGR 54th Edition? Posted on November 20, 2012 by James Griffin
On January 1, 2013, the 54th Edition of the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations goes into effect. The 54th Edition of the DGR incorporates changes to the 2013-2014 edition of the ICAO Technical Instructions and other amendments made by IATA. A summary of significant changes and new provisions follows:
IATA has codified new training standards for postal operators. These new standards specifically address the need for postal personnel to recognize and handle the limited suite of dangerous goods that are authorized for transport by international air mail. Notably, the DGR and the Universal Postal Union now authorize certain lithium battery shipments for transport by post.
Classification and Naming
As usual, there are numerous changes and amendments to the provisions for classifying and describing dangerous goods. Most of these are of a minor technical nature and do not require any substantive changes to your operations. A few of note include:
- New test criteria have been added to determine when articles may be excluded from Class 1. [188.8.131.52]
- The provisions applicable to viscous flammable liquids have been revised and clarified. [3.3.3]
- New provisions have been added to address the transport of uncleaned medical devices/equipment. [184.108.40.206.3]
- Provisions have been added to identify the requirements for lithium batteries, including requirements for manufacturers to have a quality management system. [220.127.116.11]
The next edition of the DGR includes many other new rules.
- Aside from a few entries for limited quantities, all references to “G” indicating gross weight have been deleted from the Dangerous Goods List. [4.2]
- A number of special provisions that include provisions for certain substances and articles to be “not subject to these Regulations” have been revised to limit the application to when the substances or articles are carried as cargo; see A32, A41, A47, A67, A69, A70, A98 and A129. [4.4]
- From now on, package markings must be at least 12 mm high (6 mm on smaller packagings); as of January 1, 2014, these will be mandatory minimums, not recommendations. [18.104.22.168]
- A new paragraph has been added to clearly identify dangerous goods that can be described on documentation, such as an air waybill, rather than on a Shipper’s Declaration. [8.0.1]
- Enhanced provisions for instructor qualifications. [1.5.6] 
- New provisions for De Minimis quantities of dangerous goods. [2.6.10]
- Almost all of the packing instructions have been revised to include closed head drums (1A1, 1B1, 1H1, and 1N1) and/or other metal boxes (4N) as outer packagings. [5.2]
- Significant revisions to packing instructions for lithium batteries. [PI 965-970]
How has your facility been preparing for the new year’s changes?
Keep informed of all the 2013 changes with up-to-date training at Lion Technology’s Multimodal Hazmat Shipper Workshop. Learn the latest DOT, IATA, and IMDG regulations to prepare your facility for the new year.