40 CFR § 270.1 - Purpose and scope of the regulations in this part.

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§ 270.1 Purpose and scope of the regulations in this part.

(a) Coverage.

(1) These permit regulations establish provisions for the Hazardous Waste Permit Program under Subtitle C of the Solid Waste Disposal Act, as amended by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act of 1976, as amended (RCRA), (Pub. L. 94-580, as amended by Pub. L. 95-609 and by Pub. L. 96-482; 42 U.S.C. 6091 et seq.). They apply to EPA and to approved States to the extent provided in part 271.

(2) The regulations in this part cover basic EPA permitting requirements, such as application requirements, standard permit conditions, and monitoring and reporting requirements. These regulations are part of a regulatory scheme implementing RCRA set forth in different parts of the Code of Federal Regulations. The following chart indicates where the regulations implementing RCRA appear in the Code of Federal Regulations.

Section of RCRA Coverage Final regulation
Subtitle C Overview and definitions 40 CFR part 260
3001 Identification and listing of hazardous waste 40 CFR part 261
3002 Generators of hazardous waste 40 CFR part 262
3003 Transporters of hazardous waste 40 CFR part 263
3004 Standards for HWM facilities 40 CFR parts 264, 265, 266, and 267
3005 Permit requirements for HWM facilities 40 CFR parts 270 and 124
3006 Guidelines for State programs 40 CFR part 271
3010 Preliminary notification of HWM activity (public notice) 45 FR 12746 February 26, 1980

(3) Technical regulations. The RCRA permit program has separate additional regulations that contain technical requirements. These separate regulations are used by permit issuing authorities to determine what requirements must be placed in permits if they are issued. These separate regulations are located in 40 CFR parts 264, 266, 267, and 268.

(b) Overview of the RCRA Permit Program. Not later than 90 days after the promulgation or revision of regulations in 40 CFR part 261 (identifying and listing hazardous wastes) generators and transporters of hazardous waste, and owners or operators of hazardous waste treatment, storage, or disposal facilities may be required to file a notification of that activity under section 3010. Six months after the initial promulgation of the part 261 regulations, treatment, storage, or disposal of hazardous waste by any person who has not applied for or received a RCRA permit is prohibited. Treatment, storage, and disposal facilities (TSDs) that are otherwise subject to permitting under RCRA and that meet the criteria in paragraph (b)(1), or paragraph (b)(2) of this section, may be eligible for a standardized permit under subpart J of this part. A RCRA permit application consists of two parts, part A (see § 270.13) and part B (see § 270.14 and applicable sections in §§ 270.15 through 270.29). For “existing HWM facilities,” the requirement to submit an application is satisfied by submitting only part A of the permit application until the date the Director sets for submitting part B of the application. (Part A consists of Forms 1 and 3 of the Consolidated Permit Application Forms.) Timely submission of both notification under section 3010 and part A qualifies owners and operators of existing HWM facilities (who are required to have a permit) for interim status under section 3005(e) of RCRA. Facility owners and operators with interim status are treated as having been issued a permit until EPA or a State with interim authorization for Phase II or final authorization under part 271 makes a final determination on the permit application. Facility owners and operators with interim status must comply with interim status standards set forth at 40 CFR part 265 and 266 or with the analogous provisions of a State program which has received interim or final authorization under part 271. Facility owners and operators with interim status are not relieved from complying with other State requirements. For existing HWM facilities, the Director shall set a date, giving at least six months notice, for submission of part B of the application. There is no form for part B of the application; rather, part B must be submitted in narrative form and contain the information set forth in the applicable sections of §§ 270.14 through 270.29. Owners or operators of new HWM facilities must submit parts A and B of the permit application at least 180 days before physical construction is expected to commence.

(1) The facility generates hazardous waste and then non-thermally treats or stores hazardous waste on-site in tanks, containers, or containment buildings; or

(2) The facility receives hazardous waste generated off-site by a generator under the same ownership as the receiving facility, and then stores or non-thermally treats the hazardous waste in containers, tanks, or containment buildings.

(c) Scope of the RCRA permit requirement. RCRA requires a permit for the “treatment,” “storage,” and “disposal” of any “hazardous waste” as identified or listed in 40 CFR part 261. The terms “treatment,” “storage,” “disposal,” and “hazardous waste” are defined in § 270.2. Owners and operators of hazardous waste management units must have permits during the active life (including the closure period) of the unit. Owners and operators of surface impoundments, landfills, land treatment units, and waste pile units that received waste after July 26, 1982, or that certified closure (according to § 265.115 of this chapter) after January 26, 1983, must have post-closure permits, unless they demonstrate closure by removal or decontamination as provided under § 270.1(c)(5) and (6), or obtain an enforceable document in lieu of a post-closure permit, as provided under paragraph (c)(7) of this section. If a post-closure permit is required, the permit must address applicable 40 CFR part 264 groundwater monitoring, unsaturated zone monitoring, corrective action, and post-closure care requirements of this chapter. The denial of a permit for the active life of a hazardous waste management facility or unit does not affect the requirement to obtain a post-closure permit under this section.

(1) Specific inclusions. Owners and operators of certain facilities require RCRA permits as well as permits under other programs for certain aspects of the facility operation. RCRA permits are required for:

(i) Injection wells that dispose of hazardous waste, and associated surface facilities that treat, store or dispose of hazardous waste, (See § 270.64). However, the owner and operator with a UIC permit in a State with an approved or promulgated UIC program, will be deemed to have a RCRA permit for the injection well itself if they comply with the requirements of § 270.60(b) (permit-by-rule for injection wells).

(ii) Treatment, storage, or disposal of hazardous waste at facilities requiring an NPDES permit. However, the owner and operator of a publicly owned treatment works receiving hazardous waste will be deemed to have a RCRA permit for that waste if they comply with the requirements of § 270.60(c) (permit-by-rule for POTWs).

(iii) Barges or vessels that dispose of hazardous waste by ocean disposal and onshore hazardous waste treatment or storage facilities associated with an ocean disposal operation. However, the owner and operator will be deemed to have a RCRA permit for ocean disposal from the barge or vessel itself if they comply with the requirements of § 270.60(a) (permit-by-rule for ocean disposal barges and vessels).

(2) Specific exclusions and exemptions. The following persons are among those who are not required to obtain a RCRA permit:

(i) Generators who accumulate hazardous waste on site in compliance with all of the conditions for exemption provided in 40 CFR 262.14, 262.15, 262.16, and 262.17.

(ii) Farmers who dispose of hazardous waste pesticides from their own use as provided in § 262.70 of this chapter;

(iii) Persons who own or operate facilities solely for the treatment, storage, or disposal of hazardous waste excluded from regulations under this part by 40 CFR 261.4 or 262.14 (very small quantity generator exemption).

(iv) Owners or operators of totally enclosed treatment facilities as defined in 40 CFR 260.10.

(v) Owners and operators of elementary neutralization units or wastewater treatment units as defined in 40 CFR 260.10.

(vi) Transporters storing manifested shipments of hazardous waste in containers meeting the requirements of 40 CFR 262.30 at a transfer facility for a period of ten days or less.

(vii) Persons adding absorbent material to waste in a container (as defined in § 260.10 of this chapter) and persons adding waste to absorbent material in a container, provided that these actions occur at the time waste is first placed in the container; and §§ 264.17(b), 264.171, and 264.172 of this chapter are complied with.

(viii) Universal waste handlers and universal waste transporters (as defined in 40 CFR 260.10) managing the wastes listed below. These handlers are subject to regulation under 40 part CFR 273.

(A) Batteries as described in 40 CFR 273.2;

(B) Pesticides as described in § 273.3 of this chapter;

(C) Mercury-containing equipment as described in § 273.4 of this chapter;

(D) Lamps as described in § 273.5 of this chapter; and

(E) Aerosol cans as described in § 273.6 of this chapter.

(ix) A New York State Utility central collection facility consolidating hazardous waste in accordance with 40 CFR 262.90.

(x) Reverse distributors accumulating potentially creditable hazardous waste pharmaceuticals and evaluated hazardous waste pharmaceuticals, as defined in § 266.500. Reverse distributors are subject to regulation under 40 CFR part 266 subpart P for the accumulation of potentially creditable hazardous waste pharmaceuticals and evaluated hazardous waste pharmaceuticals.

(3) Further exclusions.

(i) A person is not required to obtain a RCRA permit for treatment or containment activities taken during immediate response to any of the following situations:

(A) A discharge of a hazardous waste;

(B) An imminent and substantial threat of a discharge of hazardous waste;

(C) A discharge of a material which, when discharged, becomes a hazardous waste.

(D) An immediate threat to human health, public safety, property, or the environment from the known or suspected presence of military munitions, other explosive material, or an explosive device, as determined by an explosive or munitions emergency response specialist as defined in 40 CFR 260.10.

(ii) Any person who continues or initiates hazardous waste treatment or containment activities after the immediate response is over is subject to all applicable requirements of this part for those activities.

(iii) In the case of emergency responses involving military munitions, the responding military emergency response specialist's organizational unit must retain records for three years identifying the dates of the response, the responsible persons responding, the type and description of material addressed, and its disposition.

(4) Permits for less than an entire facility. EPA may issue or deny a permit for one or more units at a facility without simultaneously issuing or denying a permit to all of the units at the facility. The interim status of any unit for which a permit has not been issued or denied is not affected by the issuance or denial of a permit to any other unit at the facility.

(5) Closure by removal. Owners/operators of surface impoundments, land treatment units, and waste piles closing by removal or decontamination under part 265 standards must obtain a post-closure permit unless they can demonstrate to the Regional Administrator that the closure met the standards for closure by removal or decontamination in § 264.228, § 264.280(e), or § 264.258, respectively. The demonstration may be made in the following ways:

(i) If the owner/operator has submitted a part B application for a post-closure permit, the owner/operator may request a determination, based on information contained in the application, that section 264 closure by removal standards were met. If the Regional Administrator believes that § 264 standards were met, he/she will notify the public of this proposed decision, allow for public comment, and reach a final determination according to the procedures in paragraph (c)(6) of this section.

(ii) If the owner/operator has not submitted a part B application for a post-closure permit, the owner/operator may petition the Regional Administrator for a determination that a post-closure permit is not required because the closure met the applicable part 264 closure standards.

(A) The petition must include data demonstrating that closure by removal or decontamination standards were met, or it must demonstrate that the unit closed under State requirements that met or exceeded the applicable 264 closure-by-removal standard.

(B) The Regional Administrator shall approve or deny the petition according to the procedures outlined in paragraph (c)(6) of this section.

(6) Procedures for closure equivalency determination.

(i) If a facility owner/operator seeks an equivalency demonstration under § 270.1(c)(5), the Regional Administrator will provide the public, through a newspaper notice, the opportunity to submit written comments on the information submitted by the owner/operator within 30 days from the date of the notice. The Regional Administrator will also, in response to a request or at his/her own discretion, hold a public hearing whenever such a hearing might clarify one or more issues concerning the equivalence of the part 265 closure to a part 264 closure. The Regional Administrator will give public notice of the hearing at least 30 days before it occurs. (Public notice of the hearing may be given at the same time as notice of the opportunity for the public to submit written comments, and the two notices may be combined.)

(ii) The Regional Administrator will determine whether the part 265 closure met 264 closure by removal or decontamination requirements within 90 days of its receipt. If the Regional Administrator finds that the closure did not meet the applicable part 264 standards, he/she will provide the owner/operator with a written statement of the reasons why the closure failed to meet part 264 standards. The owner/operator may submit additional information in support of an equivalency demonstration within 30 days after receiving such written statement. The Regional Administrator will review any additional information submitted and make a final determination within 60 days.

(iii) If the Regional Administrator determines that the facility did not close in accordance with part 264 closure by removal standards, the facility is subject to post-closure permitting requirements.

(7) Enforceable documents for post-closure care. At the discretion of the Regional Administrator, an owner or operator may obtain, in lieu of a post-closure permit, an enforceable document imposing the requirements of 40 CFR 265.121. “Enforceable document” means an order, a plan, or other document issued by EPA or by an authorized State under an authority that meets the requirements of 40 CFR 271.16(e) including, but not limited to, a corrective action order issued by EPA under section 3008(h), a CERCLA remedial action, or a closure or post-closure plan.

[48 FR 14228, Apr. 1, 1983, as amended at 48 FR 30113, June 30, 1983; 51 FR 10176, Mar. 24, 1986; 52 FR 45798, Dec. 1, 1987; 53 FR 27165, July 19, 1988; 54 FR 9607, Mar. 7, 1989; 56 FR 32692, July 17, 1991; 60 FR 25542, May 11, 1995; 62 FR 6656, Feb. 12, 1996; 63 FR 56735, Oct. 22, 1998; 64 FR 36488, July 6, 1999; 64 FR 37638, July 12, 1999; 70 FR 45520, Aug. 5, 2005; 70 FR 53474, Sept. 8, 2005; 71 FR 40279, July 14, 2006; 81 FR 85828, Nov. 28, 2016; 84 FR 5950, Feb. 22, 2019; 84 FR 67217, Dec. 9, 2019]