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Land Ban Exemption Granted to BP Chemicals

Final Decision To Grant BP Chemicals, Inc. an Exemption From the Land Disposal Restrictions of the Hazardous and Solid Waste Amendments of 1984 (HSWA) Regarding Injection of Hazardous Waste

Federal Register, Volume: 57 , Issue: 105 , Page: 23094 (57 FR 23094) , Monday, June 1, 1992

Agency: Environmental Protection Agency--(EPA)

Document Type: Notices

Numbers: No. FRL 4138-9

Dates: Dated: 19920507

Action: Notice of final decision

SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given by the USEPA that an exemption to the land disposal restrictions under the 1984 Hazardous and Solid Waste Amendments (SDWA) to the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) has been granted to BP Chemicals, Inc. (BPCI) of Lima, Ohio. As required by 40 CFR part 148, BPCI has demonstrated to a reasonable degree of certainty, that there will be no migration of hazardous constituents from the injection zone for as long as the waste remains hazardous. BPCI, therefore, may continue to inject Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) regulated hazardous wastes, codes K011, K013, K014, F039, and various D, U, and P listed materials through Waste Disposal Wells (WDWs) No. 1, 2, 3, and 4 (if WDW No. 4 is permitted by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (Ohio EPA)) located at the Lima, Ohio, facility. This action constitutes a final USEPA action for which there is no administrative appeal.


SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: BPCI submitted a petition to the USEPA under 40 CFR part 148, which allows any person to petition the Administrator to determine whether its continued injection of hazardous wastes is protective of human health and the environment. After a comprehensive review of all material submitted, the USEPA has determined that there is a reasonable degree of certainty that BPCI's injected wastes will not migrate out of the injection zone within the next 10,000 years as required by 40 CFR part 148. The injection zone at this site includes the uppermost part of the Middle Run and all of the Mt. Simon and Eau Claire Formations, which lie between the depths of 2,430 and 3,223 feet in the test well. The immediately overlying confining zone is a portion of the Knox Dolomite between 2,100 and 2,430 feet. The confining zone is separated from the lowermost source of underground drinking water, located at a depth of 400 feet, by sequences of permeable and less permeable sedimentary rocks which provide additional protection from fluid migration into underground sources of drinking water. A fact sheet containing a complete summary of the decision now being finalized was published in the Federal Register on March 13, 1992, at 57 FR 8753.

A public notice of the proposed decision was issued on February 24, 1992, pursuant to 40 CFR 124.10, and a public hearing was subsequently held on March 25, 1992. The public comment period expired on April 9, 1992. A large number of comments were received and all comments have been considered in making the final decision. Six conditions were appended to the proposed decision. After considering all of the comments received, the USEPA has determined that three of these conditions should be modified.

In the proposed decision, injection pressure was limited to closure pressure at the casing shoe in Condition No. 6 and injection into the Middle Run was not permitted by Condition No. 2 because the fracturing pressure in this formation was lower than in the Mount Simon and Eau Claire formations. Both of these limitations evolved from USEPA's general concern about a lack of sufficient evidence that injection pressures, which currently exceed fracture closure pressure in the formations into which BPCI is injecting, might initiate or propagate fractures in violation of 40 CFR 146.13(a). However, BPCI has made additional submissions containing an analysis of 20 plus years of historical operating data. When combined with previously submitted data, this analysis shows with a reasonable degree of certainty that current operating pressures are not now nor have they ever been initiating or propagating fractures anywhere in the injection interval, which includes the Middle Run Formation. Accordingly, Condition No. 2 has been modified to expand the possible injection interval (depending on State permit allowances) to include the Middle Run Formation and Condition No. 6 has been modified to permit continued injection at current operating pressures.

Condition No. 4 in the proposed decision required submission of the final seismic reflection investigation no later than May 8, 1992. All of the material which will be contained in that report has been reviewed and considered in reaching this final determination. Accordingly, additional time for submission of the final acceptable report has been extended to no later than 60 days after BPCI receives final comments from the Ohio EPA.

The wastes for which this exemption is granted are principally process waste waters defined under 40 CFR part 261 as bottom stream from the wastewater stripper, (K011), bottom stream from the acetonitrile column, (K013), and bottoms from the acetonitrile purification column, (K014), all in the production of acrylonitrile. At the point of generation, one waste stream is sometimes hazardous due to corrosivity, (D002), and chromium content, (D007). The waste stream sometimes contains de minimus amounts of ammonia blowdown, scrubber water, slopwater, contaminated storm water, pump seal water, water from the loading/unloading sump, contaminated groundwater (F039), equipment washwater, solutions that are compatible with the waste stream, contaminated product, and laboratory wastes. Waste codes for the hazardous wastes which BPCI may continue to dispose through its deep-well disposal system are listed in Table 1-1 of the no-migration petition.

General conditions of this exemption are found at 40 CFR part 148. In addition, as a condition of granting this exemption to the ban on injection of certain hazardous wastes, the USEPA requires that the following conditions be met: 1. The permitted injection zone must be comprised of the Middle Run, Mt. Simon, and Eau Claire Formations; 2. Injection shall occur only into the Mt. Simon Sandstone and Eau Claire Formation below the depth of 2,783 feet in WDW No. 1, and into the Middle Run and Mt. Simon Sandstones in WDW No. 2, 3, and 4 (if permitted); 3. The combined monthly injection volume for the site must not exceed 24 million gallons; 4. The final report of the reflection seismic investigations carried out from 1988 through 1990 must be completed in a form acceptable to USEPA and submitted to the Ohio EPA within 60 days of receipt by BPCI of comments from Ohio EPA; 5. The petitioner shall fully comply with all requirements set forth in the Underground Injection Control Permit-To-Operate; and 6. The injection pressure at the wellhead shall be no greater than 844 psi, the pressure at which the no-migration demonstration was made.

Dated: May 7, 1992.

Dale S. Bryson, Director, Water Division Region 5, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

(FR Doc. 92-12737 Filed 5-29-92; 8:45 am)


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