Definition of Waste
St. Olaf College is not a commercial manufacturer of chemical products; therefore, on the basis of criteria set forth by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA; 40 CFR 261.2) and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (Minn. Statutes 2004 Chapter 116.06 Subd. 22), waste is defined as a material that has been disposed, burned/incinerated, or accumulated/stored in lieu of being disposed, burned/incinerated. Furthermore, a material from RNS is not considered waste until determined to be waste by the CHO.
Characteristics of Hazardous Waste
A waste chemical must be managed as a hazardous waste if it exhibits hazard characteristics or is specifically listed in certain federal or state regulations. On the basis of criteria set forth by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA; 40 CFR 261.3, 40 CFR 261.20-24) and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (Minn. Statutes 2004 Chapter 116.06 Subd. 11; Minn. Rule 7045.0135), chemical waste is considered hazardous if it exhibits any of the following characteristics:Ignitability
- Liquids, other than aqueous solutions containing less than 24% alcohol by volume, that have a flash point below 60° C (140° F).
- Non-liquids that are capable of causing fire by friction, absorption of moisture, or spontaneous chemical changes and, when ignited, burn vigorously and persistently to create a hazard.
- An ignitable compressed gas as defined under 49 CFR 173.115.
- Oxidizers such as chlorates, permanganates, inorganic peroxides, or nitrates that yield oxygen readily to stimulate the combustion of organic matter (49 CFR 173.127).
- Note: Dilutions of ethyl alcohol solutions at concentrations greater than 5% for sewage disposal purposes is prohibited by federal, state, and local regulations.
- Aqueous solutions that have a pH ≤ 2 or ≥ 12.5 (Dept. of Transportation). However, wastes with pH ranges 2-5 and 11-12.5 are also managed as hazardous waste because of sewer discharge regulations and SARA Title III requirements.
- Liquids capable of corroding SAE 1020 steel at a rate greater than 6.35 mm/year at 55°.
- Substances that when mixed with water:
- react violently or form potentially explosive mixtures.
- generate toxic gases, vapors or fumes in a quantity sufficient to present a danger to human health or the environment.
- Substances that are normally unstable and readily undergo violent changes without detonating.
- Substances that contain cyanide or sulfide that, when exposed to a pH in the range between 2 and 12.5, generate toxic gases, vapors or fumes in a quantity sufficient to present a danger to human health or the environment .
- It is capable of detonation or explosive reaction if it is subjected to a strong initiating source or if heated under confinement.
- It is readily capable of detonation or explosive decomposition or reaction at standard temperature and pressure.
- It is a forbidden explosive as defined in 49 CFR 173.51, or a Class A explosive as defined in 49 CFR 173.53 or a Class B explosive as defined in 49 CFR 173.88.
Lethality (As defined by MN Rules 7045.0131, Subpart 6)
- An oral LD50 of 500 mg/kg or less in rats.
- A skin absorption LD50 of 1000 mg/kg or less in rats.
- An inhalation LC50 of 2000 mg/m3 or less for dusts or mists administered to rats.
- An inhalation LC50 of 1000 ppm or less for gases or vapors administered to rats.
- The Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure (TCLP) is a standardized test that mimics rainwater leaching through solid waste and compares the amount of toxic constituents released by the leaching action to federally established standards. If the standard (regulatory level) is exceeded, the waste is considered hazardous. Liquids are analyzed directly without adding the leachate material.
- The list of toxic chemicals and their regulatory levels can be viewed at 40 CFR 261.24.
EPA Listed Wastes
- EPA and MPCA regulations also list approximately 450 commercial or off-specification chemicals, waste streams, or their spill residues which must be handled as hazardous wastes due to their acute or chronic toxicity.
- The EPA-listed chemicals.
- In addition, St. Olaf College follows the protocol of the University of Minnesota, and has chosen to manage as hazardous waste certain chemicals that may not technically be considered hazardous waste under the hazardous waste regulations. Such chemicals have sufficient mutagenic, teratogenic, carcinogenic, or reproductive hazards that they warrant such special handling (e.g., ethidium bromide), and the CHO works with individual Laboratory Supervisors to determine how these wastes will be handled.
- In general, waste streams containing greater than 1 ppm of these wastes should either be deactivated in the laboratory or considered hazardous waste.