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Showing 18 posts in Hazardous Waste/RCRA. View our practice description for Hazardous Waste/RCRA.

Maryland Legislative and Regulatory Updates

Legislative Updates

Maryland’s annual legislative session ended on April 13, 2015, and with the close of the session came new legislation that affects environmental regulation in Maryland.  Read More ›

EPA Commits to Respond in Early 2016 to Petition Seeking to Make the RCRA Corrosivity Characteristic 10 Times More Stringent

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA” or the “Agency”) recently informed a federal appeals court that it intends to respond no later than March 31, 2016 to a rulemaking petition submitted to EPA in 2011 by one of its own employees and a group of other government employees (“Petitioners”), which asked the Agency to dramatically increase the stringency of the corrosivity characteristic used to identify wastes as hazardous under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (“RCRA”).  The Petitioners claimed that EPA had acted “erroneously and fraudulently” in establishing the characteristic in 1980, and thereby endangered public health, most notably among first responders at “Ground Zero” on 9/11 who breathed in dust from the collapse of the twin towers of the World Trade Center. Read More ›

California Continues Hazardous Waste Enforcement Campaign Against Retailers With Two New Multi-Million Dollar Settlements

The first quarter of 2015 brought two significant settlements against retailers for alleged violations of California’s hazardous waste laws.  The settlements are the latest in a string of similar California enforcement actions that have seen total penalties of over $150 million levied against retailers in the last five years involving waste products.  Through settlement orders, California prosecutors continue to impose increasingly onerous obligations for employee training, hazardous waste determinations, mandatory third party auditing, and other oversight of hazardous waste compliance programs that go above and beyond the regulatory requirements.  This puts a premium on retailers to develop and maintain a robust hazardous waste compliance program that can withstand enforcement scrutiny.  Read More ›

FedEx Asks Federal Appeals Court to Block California Enforcement Case Alleging Mismanagement of Damaged Products

On February 23, 2015, FedEx Ground Package System, Inc. (“FedEx”) filed an appeal in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (“9th Circuit”), seeking to block an enforcement action brought by the State of California alleging that the company improperly stored and transported packages of products that it found to be damaged or leaking without complying with the State’s hazardous waste regulations.  FedEx is arguing that its process for handling such packages in California (which has since changed) was consistent with the Hazardous Materials Regulations (“HMR”) issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation (“DOT”), and that such regulations preempt State rules governing transport of hazardous wastes, pursuant to the preemption provisions of the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act (“HMTA”).  This argument, if successful, could potentially have broader implications for others who initiate or transport shipments of products and/or wastes. Read More ›

EPA Regulates Coal Combustion Residuals as Solid Waste and Retains Exclusions for Beneficial Use

Today EPA issued a final rule regulating coal combustion residuals (CCR) as solid waste under Subtitle D of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).  This ends years of speculation regarding whether EPA might decide to regulate CCR as a hazardous waste under the more onerous RCRA Subtitle C “cradle to grave” regulatory scheme.  EPA reported that it received over 450,000 comments on the proposed rule, most of which focused on which regulatory path would be followed: Subtitle C or D.  The final rule may be found here. Read More ›

EPA Revisions to Definition of “Solid Waste” Change the Regulatory Landscape for Hazardous Recyclable Materials

On December 10, 2014, the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency (“EPA” or the “Agency”) signed a final rule revising the definition of
“solid waste” for purposes of the federal hazardous waste regulatory program
under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (“RCRA”).  This definition is a
key element of the RCRA regulations, inasmuch as only solid wastes can be
subjected to regulation as hazardous wastes.  Read More ›

Beveridge & Diamond Secures Favorable CARB Determination in Offset Investigation for U.S.’s Largest GHG Offsets Provider

Attorneys in Beveridge & Diamond’s San Francisco office recently helped the
largest developer of greenhouse gas (GHG) offset credits in the U.S.,
Environmental Credit Corp. (ECC), secure a favorable determination from the
California Air Resources Board (CARB) with respect to its investigation of GHG
offsets generated at the Clean Harbors facility in El Dorado, Arkansas. Read More ›

Maryland Proposes Hazardous Substance Reporting Rule

The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) proposed hazardous substance reporting obligations on Friday, October 31, 2014.  These regulations would implement Environment Article §7-222(d), amended in 2008, requiring reporting to MDE “immediately” of certain information that “indicates the release of a hazardous substance into the environment” above a "threshold."  The law became effective as of October 1, 2009, but without implementing regulations the law has not been enforceable.  The proposed regulations would provide reporting threshold levels, further construe when reporting is triggered, and establish reporting procedures.  Read More ›

Battery Interest Groups Release Model Legislation for Extended Producer Responsibility

On June 12, 2014, the Corporation for Battery Recycling, the National Electric Manufacturers Association (NEMA), the Rechargeable Battery Association (PRBA) and Call2Recycle, Inc. released model legislation addressing the collection and recycling of both primary and small rechargeable consumer batteries. The model legislation arrives on the heels of the Vermont legislature’s recent passage of H.695, the first law in the country mandating extended producer responsibility for the recycling of single-use primary batteries.   Read More ›

Rite Aid to Pay $12.3 Million for Failing to Properly Manage Waste Products from its California Stores

Rite Aid Corporation has agreed to pay more than $12.3 million to settle a civil lawsuit alleging that Rite Aid improperly managed, transported, and disposed of hazardous waste at hundreds of its California stores and distribution centers.  The hazardous wastes at issue include: pharmaceuticals and over-the-counter medications, bleaches, photo processing chemicals, pool chlorine and acids, pesticides, fertilizers, batteries, electronic devices, mercury containing lamps, paints, lamp oils and other ignitable liquids, aerosol products, oven cleaners and various other cleaning agents, automotive products, and other flammable, reactive, toxic and corrosive materials.  Read More ›