November 2019

EPA approves streamlined system to recycle aerosol cans

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has finalized a streamlined system to manage hazardous waste aerosol cans via a rule, which will save an estimated $5.3 million annually in regulatory costs. With this rule, EPA will add hazardous waste aerosol cans to the list of materials that can be managed under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act’s universal waste management system. The change is expected to benefit the wide variety of companies that generate and manage hazardous waste aerosol cans and provides clear, practical standards to handle discarded aerosol cans.

“Today’s rule will benefit approximately 25,000 facilities across numerous industries such as the retail, construction and manufacturing sectors” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “The simplified structure of the universal waste program will help improve regulatory compliance, make aerosol can collection more economical, and facilitate the environmentally sound recycling of this common waste stream.”

The final rule is expected to:

  • Ease regulatory burdens on retail stores and others that discard hazardous waste aerosol cans;
  • Promote the collection and recycling of these cans;
  • Encourage the development of municipal and commercial collection programs to reduce the quantity of these wastes going to municipal solid waste landfills or combustors; and
  • Save the regulated community between $5.3 million to $47.8 million annually.

More information can be found at https://www.epa.gov/hw/universal-waste.