Hazardous Waste Management Permits

Who Needs A Hazardous Waste Permit?

Any person owning or operating a new or existing facility that treats, stores, or disposes of a hazardous waste must obtain a hazardous waste permit from the Tennessee Division of Solid Waste Management. The following hazardous waste processes are regulated and therefore require a hazardous waste permit:

  • Treatment Processes - tanks, surface impoundments, incinerators, boilers, kilns, coke ovens, containment buildings, blast furnaces, other furnaces and other treatment methods
  • Disposal Processes - landfills, land application, surface impoundments and other disposal methods
  • Storage Processes - containers, tanks, waste piles, surface impoundments, drip pads and other storage methods
  • Miscellaneous Processes - open burning/open detonation units for propellants, explosives, and pyrotechnics, geologic repositories, thermal units such as microwave destruction, and other methods

Note that hazardous waste permits also are issued for research and development, land treatment demonstrations and emergencies. Contact the Division of Solid Waste Management for further information.

The following persons are not required to obtain a hazardous waste permit:

  • persons covered by permits-by-rule (publicly-owned treatment works, etc.)
  • RCRA exemptions (CESQG, farmers, etc.)
  • persons who conduct treatment or containment activities during immediate response to a discharge of a hazardous waste, an imminent and substantial threat of a discharge of hazardous waste, or a discharge of a material which, when discharged, becomes a hazardous waste.

What Information Must I Provide?

A hazardous waste permit application has two parts: Part A and Part B.

Part A

The following information is requested on the Part A Permit Application (EPA Form 8700-23):

  • EPA identification number, facility name, mailing address, location, owner and operator information
  • A description of the activities conducted by the applicant that require the owner/operator to obtain a permit under RCRA
  • Up to four North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes that best describe facility activities
  • List of all permits received or applied for under other regulatory programs
  • Descriptions of the processes to be used for treating, storing, and/or disposing of hazardous waste and the design capacity of these items or units
  • Identification of the hazardous wastes to be managed at the facility
  • Topographic map of the facility, drawings, and photographs

The basic Part A information requirements are presented in TN Rule Chapter 0400-12-01-.07(4). For businesses with more than one facility, a Part A permit application must be submitted for each site. Businesses can claim confidentiality only at the time the application is submitted.

Part B

Part B information is submitted in narrative form.  The Part B permit application can be extremely complex and requires substantial documentation. There are general information requirements for all hazardous waste management facilities, as well as unit-specific information that must be submitted. The specific requirements depend on the type of facility, but most facilities require, at a minimum, the following:

  • A general description of the facility, e.g., topographic map, description of treatment/storage/disposal processes, seismic and flood plain considerations, and traffic patterns
  • A waste analysis plan that details the chemical and physical characteristics of the wastes and residues to be handled at the facility
  • A copy of the waste analysis plan
  • A description of procedures to prevent hazards, e.g., security procedures and equipment, inspection schedule; preparedness and prevention, general hazard prevention, personnel training
  • A description of procedures, structures, or equipment used at the facility to prevent releases to the environment
  • A description of precautions to prevent accidental ignition or reaction of ignitable, reactive, or incompatible waste
  • A contingency plan for emergency procedures
  • A facility closure plan
  • Closure costs and financial assurance documents
  • Consideration for the protection of ground water and surface water

Owners and operators must also submit unit-specific information for each hazardous waste management unit at the facility.  

The Part B information requirements are presented in TN Rule Chapter 0400-12-01-.07(5) and reflect the standards promulgated in TN Rule 0400-12-01-.06TN Rule 0400-12-01-.07(5)(a)1 lists the general information requirements that all hazardous waste management facilities must submit in Part B of the permit application.

How Will My Application Be Evaluated And Processed?

Permit applications are evaluated by inspecting the facility and checking its consistency with the Part B application to determine whether the performance and design standards specified in the regulations have been met. In addition, specific information pertaining to protecting ground water and air must be submitted prior to receiving the permit.

The permit process may begin with submittal of the Part A application by the applicant and then public notice of receipt by the Division. A pre-application meeting is next public noticed and held by the applicant to alert the general public. The Part B application is submitted, and a completeness determination is made if there are no significant deficiencies. The permit application continues to be processed until all deficiencies are addressed. The receipt of the Part B application is also public noticed by the Division.

A draft permit is prepared when all documents and approvals have been received, and a public notice of intent is issued. Public response to this notice may generate another public notice to hold a public hearing. After review of the public comments, a final public notice with the permit decision is issued. The entire permit process can take anywhere from 14 to 25 months, depending on the type of facility, community involvement, public hearings, revisions and appeals.

The normal duration of the permit is not to exceed 10 years or the expected operation or life of the facility, whichever is less.

What Fees Are Required?

Application Fees – Fees are required for new and renewal applications for storage, treatment, and disposal facilities including facilities conducting corrective action and post-closure under permits, orders, or other enforceable documents.

All fees are required prior to application review. Others fees are required prior to review for research, demonstration, and development permits and emergency permits, temporary authorizations, permit modifications, and various plans/assessments.

The form for submittal of these non-annual application fees is available below:

Form Description & Number

Other Non-Annual Review Fees - There are also fees due prior to review for variances or waivers, contained-in determinations, chromium exclusions, and regulatory interpretation requests (including, but not limited to, waste determinations, recycling, exclusions, exemptions, etc.). These fees are also included on Form TSDF-APP above.

Annual Maintenance Fees - Storage and treatment fees include a base fee plus a fee for the facility's constructed design capacity. Land disposal operations have an annual fee base plus a fee based on remaining capacity except for permitted capacity for injection wells. There are also annual fees for post-closure and corrective action related activities.

Hazardous waste tipping fees are paid by permitted treatment, storage, or disposal facilities that receive hazardous wastes from off-site. Certain exemptions apply.

Annual maintenance fees are required by March 1 of each year. Annual maintenance fee forms are available on our forms page for Treatment, Storage, & Disposal (TSD) facilities, Generators, and Remedial Action.

What Are My Rights And Responsibilities After The Permit Is Granted?

The applicant's rights and responsibilities are specified on the permit. Both general and specific requirements, the entire Part B, and other provisions and conditions as specified by the regulations are incorporated in the permit. This includes changes to permits (e.g., modifications and transfers), permit conditions and compliance standards.

What Are The Division's Rights And Responsibilities After The Permit Is Granted?

The Division has the right to inspect a facility at a minimum of every two years, terminate a permit or deny a renewal for noncompliance, and establish permit conditions in order to achieve compliance with federal laws. Penalties for non-compliance can range from civil administrative orders to criminal penalties.

The Division has the responsibility to regulate the treatment, storage, and disposal of hazardous wastes in order to protect public health and the environment. The Division has the responsibility to submit quarterly reports of hazardous waste activities to the EPA.

Whom Do I Contact For Applications, Assistance And Other Sources Of Information?

Applications and assistance can be obtained by contacting the Division of Solid Waste Management at 615-532-0780. Call 615-532-0780 and ask for the Hazardous Waste Permitting Program. Alternatively, you may email Solid.Waste@tn.gov or fax your request to 615-532-0938. New applicants who need more than one permit can contact their Environmental Field Office for further assistance.

Applicants may refer to the following publications for further information:

This Page Last Updated: May 24, 2023 at 11:30 AM