Texas Hazardous Waste Disposal Update

The US Environmental Protection Agency is launching their new Electronic Manifest System (e-Manifest) tomorrow, June 30th, 2018.

The new system is called the Hazardous Waste Electronic Manifest Establishment ACT, and became law on 10/5/2012.  The system is designed to simplify and streamline the management and tracking of hazardous waste shipments across the US via the “eManifest” system.

This new system impacts all generators of non-hazardous and hazardous waste materials, hazardous waste transporters and waste treatment facilities (TSDFs).

The system provides for 4 different manifesting methods:

  • Paper manifest submitted to EPA
  • PDF image of the manifest submitted electronically
  • Data file and PDF image of the manifest submitted together
  • Manifest created in e-Manifest system

The eManifest system has associated costs which will be passed on to generators of hazardous industrial waste via new nominal fees, which will range from $10 – $20 per manifest.  The fees are intended to cover administrative, operational, maintenance and upgrade costs for the system.  TSDF (hazardous waste treatment and storage facilities) will collect these fees from generators and forward to EPA.

Most TSDFs will support the paper manifest option for an initial time period to help facilitate transition and adoption of the new program.  For this option, hazardous waste generators will continue use of paper manifests, but the new forms will include only 5 pages instead of the current 6 page format.  Generators will still sign manifests the same way as with the previous manifest form, may still be required to provide copies to their state environmental agencies (depending on the state) and must maintain paper copies on file for 3 years.

The new eManifest system cannot automatically validate paper manifest data such as DOT proper shipping names, EPA hazardous waste codes, state waste codes, transporter, generator and TSDF EPA ID’s, DOT container types, quantities, etc..  Therefore each receiving TSDF will be responsible for validating all such information prior uploading into the new eManifest system to ensure compliance with environmental, DOT and safety regulations.

TSDFs will then process the paper manifest form by providing electronic signatures and then enter them into the eManifest system (“CDX” system).

Some TSDFs will also initially support the other 3 “hybrid” and full electronic manifesting options described at the beginning of this post.  For the “hybrid” option, the original manifest will be created by the TSDF in the eManifest system, and then printed on paper for use by the transporter and signature by the waste generator.  (These paper copies must still be retained on file for 3 years by the waste generator, the same as the original paper manifests).  Upon receiving the waste shipment, the TSDF will then electronically sign and transmit the manifest using the CDX electronic system.  This process may require additional or higher fees than the paper method due to complexity.  Most TSDFs have still not determined actual costs for this option

The good news is that given the option to continue using paper manifests (for whatever that time period might be), the transition to the new eManifest system should be relatively seamless and simple for most waste generators.

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