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Waste Characteristics

Waste characteristics is the product of toxicity, persistence and bioaccumulation potential factor values.

  • The bioaccumulation potential factor value (BPFV) indicates the tendency of certain substances to accumulate in the fatty tissue of aquatic organisms and to be found there at concentration orders of magnitude greater than the concentrations in the surface water and the sediments.

  • HRS rule, page 51617, Section, describes how the (BPFV) are calculated.

  • SCDM provides two values for bioaccumulation for the human food chain threat (fresh water and salt water) and two values for the environmental threat. The values for the human food chain threat are based on data from aquatic organisms that human beings eat. The values for the environmental threat are based on data for all aquatic organisms.

  • HRS rule, page 51617 describes the procedure for choosing between the fresh water value and the salt water value.

  • Section 8.3, pages 239-240, of the HRS Guidance Manual gives definitions of fresh water, salt water, and brackish water. It also discusses how to apply these definitions in the selection of a bioaccumulation factor value.

The algorithm for calculating waste characteristics is a bit more complex, because the BPFV is now included in the selection of the most hazardous substances, along with toxicity and persistence.

Waste Characteristics

The first part of the algorithm is already familiar: toxicity times persistence times quantity, capped at 108. The BPFV is then used and the product is capped at 1012. The maximum score for waste characteristics from HRS Table 2-7 is now 1,000.

Scenario: The value for hazardous waste quantity is at its maximum of 1,000,000. Two substances tie for the most hazardous with a product value of 5 x 106. Their values are:

Toxicity Persistence BPFV
#1 10,000 1 500
#2 100 1 50,000

Which substance will give the higher score for waste characeristics and why?ANSWER

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