Hazardous Waste Program
"Hazardous waste" means waste, or combination of wastes, which because of its quantity, concentration, or physical, chemical, or infectious characteristics may cause, or significantly contribute to, an increase in mortality or an increase in serious irreversible illness or incapacitating reversible illness or pose a substantial present or potential hazard to human health or the environment when improperly treated, stored, transported, disposed of, or otherwise managed.
Implementation of Tennessee's hazardous waste program began in October 1980. The Division of Solid Waste Management (DSWM) regulates hazardous waste generation, transportation, storage, treatment, and disposal. Regulation of hazardous waste is also a federal responsibility under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). Tennessee has been authorized by EPA to administer the majority of the federal program and receives a grant in support of this effort. (Other funding for this program is obtained through a fee collection system.) DSWM's Hazardous Waste Management Program has authority over facilities subject to EPA RCRA Subtitle C, under the oversight of EPA Region 4. The Hazardous Waste Management Program operates under the authority of the Hazardous Waste Management Act of 1977 (T.C.A. §68-212-101 et seq.) and various Hazardous Waste Management rules.
The coordinated state and federal program regulates activities such as:
- the permitting and inspection of hazardous waste storage, recycling, treatment, and disposal facilities
- the management of hazardous waste from generators (primarily manufacturing industry) through the required Waste Stream Notifications, Annual Reports, and Waste Reduction Reports
- the annual registration of hazardous waste transporters
- the regulation of used oil