Requirements for Transboundary Shipments of Specific Wastes

The requirements for the transboundary shipment of certain hazardous wastes are described by specific implementing regulations under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) or under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). For more information about the requirements for each of these waste streams, click on the tabbed links below.

Cathode Ray Tubes (CRTs)

A CRT is the glass video display component of an electronic device (usually a television or computer monitor). Many used computers are resold or donated so they can be used again, either as is or after minor repairs. EPA encourages reuse as a responsible way to manage CRTs. If reuse or repair is not a practical option, CRTs can be sent for recycling, which typically consists of disassembly for the purpose of recovering valuable materials from the CRTs, such as lead or glass.

Under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), CRTs are considered hazardous waste when disposed due to the presence of lead. However, used CRTs and CRT glass being recycled or exported for recycling are not considered solid or hazardous waste under RCRA if certain conditions are met. See Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) section 261.4(a)(22).

 
  • Overview of CRT Export Requirements

    The following table provides an overview of the requirements for exporting CRTs for reuse or recycling. In addition to complying with U.S. requirements, exporters of CRTs are also responsible for complying with the laws and regulations of the importing country. Exporters should also check with their state regulatory agencies as they may have more stringent requirements than the federal government.

    Requirement Exports of Used, Intact CRTs for Reuse Exports of Used (broken or intact) CRTs for Recycling Exports of Processed CRT Glass for Recycling

    General Requirements
    Provides guidance for exporters

    Information for exporters of used, intact CRTs for reuse Information for exporters of used, broken CRTs for recycling Information for exporters of processed CRT glass for recycling

    Where to find requirements

    §260.10 (definitions); §261.41 §260.10 (definitions); §261.39; §261.40 §260.10 (definitions); §261.39(c) and (d)

    Storage, Labeling, Transportation Standards
    Material must be stored, labeled, and processed according to specific requirements

    Not required

    Required for exporters of used, broken CRTs for recycling §261.39(a)(1 – 3)

    Not required once the glass has been processed (prior to processing the material would be considered used, broken CRTs and would be subject to 261.39(a)

    Glass Processing requirements
    Processing of CRT glass must occur under specific conditions

    Not applicable Not applicable

    Required
    §261.39(b)

    Demonstrated Use of Processed Glass
    Demonstrate exports are used for glass making or lead smelting, or are being used as an effective substitute for a product or ingredient and are not disposed in receiving country
    Not applicable Not applicable

    Required
    §261.39(c) and (d) or §261.2(e); §261.2(f)

    Demonstrated Legitimate Reuse or Recycling
    Demonstrate exports are legitimately recycled or reused and are not disposed (including not being sham recycled) in receiving country.

    Required
    §261.2(f) and (g); §260.43

    Required
    §261.2(f) and (g); §260.43

    Required
    §261.2(f) and (g); §260.43

    Speculative Accumulation
    Used CRTs and CRT glass must be recyclable with at least 75% recycled per calendar year

    Not applicable

    Required
    §261.39(a)(4); §261.1(c)(8)

    Required
    §261.39(a)(4); §261.1(c)(8)

    Notice of intent
    Notifies EPA of the intent to export CRTs

    Required
    §261.41(a)(1-2)

    Required
    §261.39(a)(5)(i)

    Not required

    Acknowledgement of Consent
    EPA letter documenting the written consent of the receiving country to accept hazardous waste and describing the terms and conditions of consent

    Not required

    Required
    §261.39(a)(5)(v-vii)

    Not required

    Submission of Electronic Export Information (EEI)

    As of the AES filing compliance date, exporters must submit EEI for each shipment to the Automated Export System (AES) under the International Trade Data System (ITDS)

    Not required

    Required
    §261.39(a)(5)(v)(B)

    Not required

    Reporting
    Submit annual reports to EPA

    Not required

    Required
    §261.39(a)(5)(x - xi)

    Not required

    Recordkeeping
    Maintain business records for a specified period of time to be provided upon request

    Required
    §261.41(b)

    Required
    §261.39(a)(5)(ix)

    Not required
  • Background on CRTs and Exports

    In 2006, EPA amended its regulations under RCRA to encourage recycling and reuse of used CRTs and CRT glass (71 Federal Register 42928, July 28, 2006). The amendments exclude these materials from the RCRA definition of solid waste under certain conditions. In 2014, the Agency further revised the requirements for used CRTs and CRT glass exported for reuse or recycling. The 2014 CRT Export Rule clarifies who is considered to be a CRT exporter and establishes procedural requirements that allow EPA to better track exports of CRTs for reuse and recycling (79 Federal Register 36220, June 26, 2014). These changes help ensure safe management of these materials.

  • Definition of a CRT Exporter

    A CRT exporter is any person in the United States who initiates a transaction to send used CRTs outside the United States or its territories for recycling or reuse, or any intermediary in the United States arranging for such export (40 CFR section 260.10). EPA added a definition of CRT exporter to eliminate any potential confusion over who is responsible for fulfilling the CRT exporter duties. The requirements for CRT exporters vary depending on whether CRTs are being exported for reuse or recycling, or whether processed CRT glass is being exported for CRT glass making or lead smelting.

  • Requirements for Exporters of Used, Intact CRTs for Reuse

    Demonstrated Legitimate Reuse: Any person exporting used, intact CRTs for reuse must demonstrate that the export is being legitimately reused, following EPA’s definition of legitimate recycling, and not disposed in the receiving country (40 CFR section 261.2(f) and (g))/(section 260.43).

    EPA’s definition of legitimate recycling is found in 40 CFR section 260.43. The four legitimacy factors are as follows:

    • Factor 1: Legitimate recycling must involve a hazardous secondary material that provides a useful contribution to the recycling process or to a product or intermediate of the recycling process.
    • Factor 2: The recycling process must produce a valuable product or intermediate.
    • Factor 3: The generator and the recycler must manage the hazardous secondary material as a valuable commodity when it is under their control.
    • Factor 4: The product of the recycling process must be comparable to a legitimate product or intermediate.

    Notice of Intent: Any person planning to export used, intact CRTs for reuse must submit a notification to the EPA covering future export activities for 12 months or less (40 CFR section 261.41(a)(1-2)). This notification must be renewed at least every 12 months for as long as CRTs will be exported for reuse.

    The notification must include the address and contact information for the exporter and foreign destination facilities, a description of the manner in which the CRTs will be reused, the planned frequency of export shipments, means of transport, total quantity of CRTs proposed to be shipped over the export period, information about any transit countries, and a certification statement. See EPA’s Template for Notification of Intent to Export CRTs for Reuse (PDF) for more information.

    Send the notice to:

    ATTN: Notice of Intent to Export CRTs for Reuse
    Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance
    Office of Federal Activities
    International Compliance Assurance Division (Mail Code 2254A)
    Environmental Protection Agency
    1200 Pennsylvania Ave NW
    Washington, DC 20460

    Recordkeeping: Exporters must keep copies of normal business records, such as contracts, demonstrating that each shipment of exported used, intact CRTs will be reused (40 CFR section 261.41(b)). Exporters must retain records for three years.

    If the documents are written in a language other than English, CRT exporters of used, intact CRTs sent for reuse must provide both the original, non-English version of the normal business records as well as a third-party translation of the normal business records into English within 30 days upon request by EPA.

  • Requirements for Exporters of Used (Intact or Broken) CRTs for Recycling

    Storage, labeling, and shipment standards: Exporters of used, broken CRTs for recycling as defined in 40 CFR section 260.10 must manage the material according to the storage, labeling and shipment requirements specified in 40 CFR section 261.39. These include:

    • Storage in a building with a roof, floor, and walls or placed in a container (i.e., a package or vehicle) that is constructed, filled, and closed to minimize releases to the environment of CRT glass (including fine solid materials).
    • Each container must be labeled with one of the following phrases: “Used cathode ray tube(s)-contains leaded glass” or “Leaded glass from televisions or computers.” It must also be labeled “Do not mix with other glass materials.”
    • Used, broken CRTs must be transported in a container that meets (1) and (2) above.

    Demonstrated Legitimate Recycling: Any person exporting used (broken or intact) CRTs for recycling must demonstrate that the export is being legitimately recycled and not disposed (including not being sham recycled) in the receiving country (40 CFR section 261.2(f) and (g))/(section 260.43).

    EPA’s definition of legitimate recycling is found in 40 CFR section 260.43. The four legitimacy factors are as follows:

    • Factor 1: Legitimate recycling must involve a hazardous secondary material that provides a useful contribution to the recycling process or to a product or intermediate of the recycling process.
    • Factor 2: The recycling process must produce a valuable product or intermediate.
    • Factor 3: The generator and the recycler must manage the hazardous secondary material as a valuable commodity when it is under their control.
    • Factor 4: The product of the recycling process must be comparable to a legitimate product or intermediate.

    Speculative Accumulation: Used CRTs and CR glass must be recyclable with at least 75% recycled per calendar year (See 40 CFR section 261.39(a)(4)/(section 261.1(c)(8)). See Frequent Questions on CRT Rule for a discussion of how CRTs and CRT glass is shown not to be speculatively accumulated.

    Notice of Intent: Exporters of CRTs for recycling must submit export notifications to EPA electronically using EPA’s Import Export Tracking System (WIETS) at least 60 days prior to export (See 40 CFR section 271.39(a)(5)(ii)).

    The notice may cover exports occurring during a 12-month or lesser period, and must include address and contact information about the exporter and all foreign recyclers, a description of the recycling, the planned frequency of export shipments, means of transport, total quantity of CRTs proposed to be shipped over the export period, and information about any transit countries.

    Acknowledgement of Consent: Exporters shipping used CRTs for recycling under the CRT exclusion are prohibited from shipping until they have received an EPA Acknowledgement of Consent (AOC) letter documenting the consent EPA has received from the country of import and any transit countries (See 40 CFR section 261.39(a)(5)(v-vii)). A copy of the AOC letter must accompany each export shipment. Shipments cannot commence without consent from the receiving country.

    If a shipment cannot be delivered to the recycler listed in the notice for any reason, the exporter must notify EPA of the need to change the destination recycler and obtain consent prior to shipping to a different recycler.

    Submission of Electronic Export Information (EEI): Because EPA’s Acknowledgement of Consent letter is equivalent to an export license, exporters, or their U.S. authorized agents, must submit Electronic Export Information (EEI) for each shipment to the Automated Export System (AES) (15 CFR 30.2(a)(iv)(F)). The AES resides in the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) under the International Trade Data System. For more information, go to https://www.cbp.gov/trade/aes.

    As of the AES filing compliance date, exporters must include the following information in their EEI submission (15 CFR 30.4(b), in addition to the other information required under 15 CFR 30.6:

    (1) EPA license code;

    (2) Commodity classification code per 15 CFR 30.6(a)(12);

    (3) EPA consent number;

    (4) Country of ultimate destination code per 15 CFR 30.6(a)(5);

    (5) Date of export per 15 CFR 30.6(a)(2);

    (6) Quantity of each hazardous waste in shipment and units for reported quantity, if required reporting units established by value for the reported commodity classification number are in units of weight or volume per 15 CFR 30.6(a)(15); or

    (7) EPA net quantity for each hazardous waste reported in units of kilograms if required reporting units established by value for the reported commodity classification number are not in units of weight.

    If any conditions specified on the original notification change, the exporter must provide EPA with a written renotification of the change. The shipment cannot take place until the exporter receives the EPA Acknowledgement of Consent letter reflecting the consent to export CRTs reflecting the receiving country’s consent to the changes.

    Reporting: By March 1, 2016, CRT exporters must file an annual report summarizing the quantities, frequency of shipment, and destination(s) of all used CRTs exported for recycling during the previous calendar year (40 CFR section 261.39(a)(5)(x – xi)). The report must also include the name, EPA ID number (if applicable), mailing and site address of the CRT exporter, the calendar year covered by the report, and a certification signed by the exporter (79 FR 36220, June 26, 2014). This report is due annually by March 1 of each subsequent year. For more information, see Template for Annual Report for a Person Exporting CRTs for Recycling (PDF). Send the notice to the EPA Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance address specified above.

    Prior to one year after the AES filing compliance date, annual reports must be sent to EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance address:.

    Send annual reports to:

    Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance
    Office of Federal Activities, International Compliance Assurance Division (Mail Code 2254A)
    Environmental Protection Agency
    1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW.
    Washington, DC 20460

    After the AES filing compliance date, annual reports must be submitted electronically to the office listed using EPA’s Waste Import Export Tracking System (WIETS).

    Recordkeeping: Exporters must keep copies of normal business records, such as notifications, Acknowledgements of Consent to Export CRTs, and annual reports for a period of at least three years from the due date of the report (40 CFR section 261.39(a)(5)(ix)). Exporters may satisfy these recordkeeping requirements by retaining electronically submitted documents in the exporter’s account on EPA’s Waste Import Export Tracking System (WIETS), provided that copies are readily available for viewing or production if requested by any EPA or authorized state inspector.

  • Requirements for Exporters of Processed CRT Glass

    Definition of CRT Processed Glass: CRT processed glass is glass that has been broken and sorted into the different glass portions of the CRT (panel, funnel, and frit line) which are classified according to chemical composition, especially by the amount of lead contained (40 CFR section 261.10).

    Requirements for Processing CRT Glass: Processed CRT glass exported for CRT glass making or lead smelting is not subject to the export requirements of the CRT rule. CRT glass destined for export must still, however, meet the requirements for processing CRT glass in 40 CFR section 261.39(b).

    The “CRT Processing” requirements include:

    • Processing of CRT glass must occur within a building with a roof, floor, and walls;
    • No activities may be performed that use temperatures high enough to volatilize lead from CRTs.

    Demonstrated Use of Processed Glass: Under the CRT exclusion, processed CRT glass can be sent for recycling at a CRT glass manufacturer or a lead smelter (40 CFR section 261.39(c)). In some cases, under a different exclusion, processed CRT glass may be used as an ingredient in an industrial process to make a product, provided that the materials are not being reclaimed, or it may be used as an effective substitute for a commercial product (40 CFR section 261.2(e)(1)(i) and (ii)). For example, processed CRT glass may be used as an effective substitute for a fluxing agent at copper smelters (See EPA’s memo dated April 24, 2013). Additionally, processed CRT glass may be used as a substitute for lead oxide in the production of ceramic tiles under the use/reuse provision at 40 CFR section 261.2(e) as long as that use is legitimate (See EPA's memo dated September 10, 2014 and Frequent Question #14).

    To determine if a specific use for processed CRT glass is legitimate recycling, a company should evaluate whether:

    1. the processed CRT glass provides a useful contribution;
    2. the recycling process produces a valuable product or intermediate;
    3. the processed CRT glass is managed as a valuable commodity; and
    4. the product of the recycling process is comparable to a legitimate product.

    If processed CRT glass is being exported for a purpose other than legitimate recycling, then it is considered to be a hazardous waste and RCRA export regulations apply.

    In addition, if processed CRT glass is exported for use in a manner constituting disposal (i.e., used in a manner that results in the product utilizing them being applied or placed into or onto the land), then the CRT glass would be considered a hazardous waste regulated under 40 CFR part 266 subpart C and RCRA hazardous waste regulations apply to those exports. 

    Speculative Accumulation: Processed CRT glass must be recyclable with at least 75% recycled per calendar year (40 CFR section 261.1(c)(8))/(section 261.39(a)(4)). See Frequent Questions on CRT Rule for a discussion of how CRTs and CRT glass is shown not to be speculatively accumulated.

Spent Lead-Acid Batteries (SLABs)

Lead-acid batteries are secondary, wet cell batteries that contain liquid and can be recharged for many uses. They are the most widely used rechargeable batteries in the world and are mainly used as starting, lighting, and ignition power batteries found in automobiles and other vehicles, or as an emergency backup power source. A rechargeable lead-acid battery is spent if it no longer performs effectively.

Spent-lead acid batteries (SLABs) are considered both solid and hazardous wastes and are generally managed under special management standards under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). See Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 266 Subpart G. The requirements for exporters who wish to ship spent lead-acid batteries (SLABs) to other countries for recycling or recovery depend in part on the desired destination country.

Such shipments are subject to the U.S. requirements for exports, the regulations for imports in the destination country, and whatever international waste agreement is most relevant to the waste and countries concerned.

 
  • Background

    Lead-acid batteries are secondary, wet cell batteries, meaning they can be recharged for many uses and they contain liquid. They are the most widely used rechargeable battery in the world. Lead-acid batteries are mainly used as starting, lighting, and ignition power batteries found in automobiles and other vehicles, and as back-up power sources when the normal electricity supply is interrupted.

    Lead-acid batteries are typically composed of an outside plastic casing and six inner cells containing lead strips and positive and negative lead terminals. Each cell is made up of two lead frameworks, the positive plate being lead dioxide and the negative plate being spongy lead (a metallic lead in a high-surface-area porous structure). Each cell is filled with sulfuric acid as the electrolyte. When the battery is in use, the spongy lead, sulphuric acid, and lead dioxide react. Through this reaction, an electrical current is produced. Both electrodes are converted to lead sulfate, a process which is reversed during recharge. A rechargeable lead-acid battery is spent if it no longer performs effectively and cannot be recharged. Battery failure is most commonly attributed to water loss and grid corrosion during normal use.

    SLABs are considered both solid and hazardous waste under Subtitle C of RCRA because they can be classified as spent materials being reclaimed and they exhibit the toxicity characteristic for lead, and the corrosivity characteristic for the sulfuric acid electrolyte in the battery.

    Currently, SLABs are either recycled or disposed. Battery Council International (BCI) reported a 99.2 percent domestic SLAB recycle rate for the years 1999 - 2003. SLABs are one of the most recycled consumer products. When a spent battery is collected, it is sent to a recycler where the lead, plastic and battery acids can be reclaimed and sent to a new battery manufacturer.

  • Information about SLAB Exports

    Exporters who wish to ship spent lead-acid batteries (SLABs) to other countries for recycling or recovery must comply with the U.S. requirements for exports, the regulations for imports in the destination country, and whatever international waste agreement is most relevant to the waste and countries concerned.

  • What SLAB Exporters Need to Know about International Agreements

    There are two major international agreements that expressly address the export of SLABs:

    1. the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Waste and Their Disposal (Basel Convention); and
    2. the OECD's Amended 2001 Decision.

    The final amendments harmonize EPA export requirements for SLABs with both of these international agreements.

    The Basel Convention is a multilateral international agreement governing transboundary movements of hazardous waste for recovery or disposal. Among other things, the Basel Convention includes a requirement for notice and written consent for transboundary movements of hazardous waste between trading countries. SLABs are covered under the Basel Convention as a hazardous waste and are thus subject to the notice and consent requirements of the Basel Convention. As of December 2015, 183 countries and the European Union are party to the Basel Convention. The United States is a signatory to the Convention, but has not yet ratified it.

    The Basel Convention generally prohibits Parties from permitting the import of SLABs, a hazardous waste, from a non-Party like the United States unless the countries concerned participate in a separate international agreement (referred to as an “Article 11 Agreement”). Exports of SLABs for recovery to any non-OECD country that is a Basel Party are subject to either the Basel Convention or an Article 11 agreement. In other words, exports of SLABs from the United States to a non-OECD country that is a Basel Party is likely prohibited by the Basel Party unless the countries involved have a separate international agreement. Currently, the United States does not have a bilateral waste agreement with any non-OECD country covering export shipments from the United States to a non-OECD Basel Party.

    Prior to submitting any export notification to U.S. EPA, exporters of SLABs you should contact the competent authority Exit for any non-OECD Basel Party to determine whether or not they consider SLABs to be Basel hazardous waste and whether or not they could legally accept shipments of SLABs for recovery from a Basel non-Party like the United States.

    The OECD's Amended 2001 Decision also governs the transboundary movements of hazardous waste destined for recycling within OECD countries. The OECD identifies SLABs, whether whole or crushed, as subject to the Amber (e.g., hazardous waste) control procedures. For more information about OECD requirements for exporting SLABS, see RCRA Requirements for SLAB Exporters below.

  • Overview of RCRA Requirements for SLAB Exports and Imports for Recovery

    The following table provides an overview of the requirements for exporting and importing SLABs. The requirements for exporters, importers, and receiving facilities of SLABs are very similar to the requirements for exporters, importers and receiving facilities of hazardous waste with the exception of RCRA manifest requirements. Refer to the table below and the RCRA requirements for exports of hazardous waste and the RCRA requirements for imports of hazardous waste for an explanation of federal requirements. Exporters are also responsible for complying with the laws and regulations of the importing country.

    Requirement

    SLAB Imports
    40 CFR Part 262 Subpart H

    SLAB Exports
    40 CFR Part 262 Subpart H

    General Requirements
    Provides guidance for SLAB exporters, SLAB importers, and recyclers of foreign SLABs
    40 CFR 266.80(a)(8)-(10) requires importers and recyclers of foreign SLABs for reclamation to comply with 40 CFR parts 261, §262.11, §262.12, part 262 subpart H, and applicable provisions under part 268. 40 CFR 266.80(a)(6) requires exporter of SLABs for reclamation to comply with 40 CFR parts 261, §262.11, §262.12, and 40 CFR part 262, subpart H.  

    EPA Identification (ID) Number
    Issued by authorized State program or EPA Regional office based on Form 8700-12 notification of RCRA Subtitle C activity (e.g. acting as exporter or importer a hazardous waste such as SLABs)

    Required
    §262.12(d)
    Required
    §262.12(d)
    Contracts
    Specifies the responsibilities of the exporter, importer and recovery facility
    Required
    §262.84(f)

    Required
    §262.83(f)

    Custom Code
    SLABs shipped for recovery of lead must be identified by a specific Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) Classification Commodity code

    Not necessarily applicable Not required, but if opt to include must use Code No. 8548.10.0540 or Code No. 8548.10.0580

    Notice of Intent
    Notifies EPA of the intent to export or import hazardous waste such as SLABs

    Required if the country of export does not control as export of hazardous waste
    §262.84(b), §264.12(a)(1), §265.12(a)(1)

    Required
    §262.83(b)

    Acknowledgement of Consent
    EPA letter documenting the written consent of the receiving country and any transit countries to accept hazardous waste and describing the terms and conditions of consent

    Required if the country of export does not control as export of hazardous waste
    §262.84(b)(5)

    Consent required per §262.83(a)(3)

    Electronic Export Information (EEI)
    Additional RCRA items as part of the Electronic Export Information submitted for each export shipment to the Automated Export System (AES) under the International Trade Data System (ITDS)
    Not applicable Optional until AES filing compliance date; required thereafter
    §262.83(a)(6)
    RCRA Manifest
    Contains information on the type and quantity of waste transported and instructions for handling waste and accompanies shipment from origin to port of exit or border crossing

    Not required by EPA, but exporter or importer should check with their state regulatory agency because certain states have additional or more stringent requirements than the federal government.  

    International Movement Document
    Includes information about the shipment, recovery facility, and transporters and accompanies the waste from origin in the country of export to recovery facility in the country of import

    Required
    §262.84(d)

    Required
    §262.83(d)

    Confirmation of Receipt
    For exports, SLAB exporter must require destination facility to confirm delivery of the SLAB shipment; For imports, U.S. SLAB recycling facility must confirm delivery of the SLAB shipment

    Required
    §262.84(d)(xv); §264.12(a)(2); §264.71(d); §265.12(a)(2); §265.71(d)

    Required
    §262.83(d)(xv) and §262.83(f)(4)

    Export Exception Report
    Submit exception reports if shipment is delayed, lost, or returned to the United States
    Not applicable

    Required under circumstances specified in §262.83(h)

    Recycling Facility Notification of the Need to Arrange Alternate Management or Return of a SLAB Import Shipment
    Receiving facilities must inform importer, foreign exporter, and EPA of need to arrange alternate management for SLAB import shipment or to return shipment to country of export
    Required
    §262.84(f)(4)(i); §264.12(a)(3); §265.12(a)(3)
    Not applicable

    Confirmation of Recovery
    Affirms that the SLABs were recovered in the manner specified in the contract and consent

    Required
    §262.84(g); §264.12(a)(4)(i); §265.12(a)(4)(i))

    Required
    §262.83(f)(5)

    Export Reporting
    Submit annual reports by March 1 of each year

    Not applicable

    Required
    §262.83(g)

    Recordkeeping
    Maintain business records for a specified period of time to be provided upon request

    Required for importers
    §262.84(h)(1)

    Required for TSDFs
    §264.12(a)(2); §265.12(a)(2); §264.71(d); §265.71(d); §264.74; §265.74

    Required for for receiving facilities, including TSDFs
    §262.84(h)(2)

    Required
    §262.83(i)

  • Important Information about the Custom Code for SLAB Exports

    EPA has been informed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that export shipments of intact, spent lead acid batteries (SLABs) being shipped for recovery of lead should only be identified as:

    • Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) Classification Commodity Code No. 8548.10.0540 (“Lead-Acid Storage Batteries of a Kind Used for Starting Engines, for the Recovery of Lead”) or
    • Code No. 8548.10.0580 (“Spent Primary cells, Spent Primary Batteries, and spent electric storage batteries for recovery of lead, other than lead-acid storage batteries for starting engines”).

    Labeling SLAB export shipments as 7802.00.0030 (“Lead Waste and Scrap Obtained from Lead-Acid Storage Batteries”) or as 7802.00.0060 (“Lead Waste and Scrap other than Obtained from Lead-Acid Storage Batteries”) is not correct and is not acceptable.

    We are informing SLAB exporters of this issue because we have received SLAB export notices destined for an OECD Member country that used the OECD notification document and listed “7802.00.0030” in Block 14, Item (xii) (“Customs code(s) (HS)”).  Based on the information from CBP, EPA will reject notices proposing export of intact, wet or dry spent lead acid batteries that choose to list any customs code other than “8548.10.0540” or “8548.10.0580.” 

    Identifying the customs code for the material to be exported is not a required notice element in 40 CFR Part 262 Subpart H, although this information may be required by the importing country.  If we receive a notice listing an incorrect customs code, we will inform the exporter that the notice must be corrected and re-submitted before we will forward the notice to the listed countries of import and transit for review. 

Universal Waste

Universal wastes are commonly recycled wastes with special management provisions intended to facilitate recycling. Click on the links below to learn more about universal waste and RCRA export and import requirements.

 
  • Overview

    There are four categories of universal wastes:

    • hazardous waste batteries,
    • hazardous waste pesticides that have been recalled or collected in waste pesticide collection programs,
    • hazardous waste lamps, and
    • hazardous waste mercury-containing equipment.

    The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) regulates three types of universal waste exporters:

    • small quantity handlers of universal waste (SQHUW),
    • large quantity handlers of universal waste (LQHUW), and
    • universal waste transporters.

    The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) regulates three types of universal waste importers and receiving facilities:

    • small quantity handlers of universal waste (SQHUW),
    • large quantity handlers of universal waste (LQHUW),
    • universal waste transporters, and
    • receiving facilities.

    There are two different types of activities that can make a person a handler of universal waste.

    • First, a handler can be a person who generates, or creates, universal waste. For example, this may include a person who uses batteries, pesticides, mercury-containing equipment, or lamps and who eventually decides that they are no longer usable.
    • Second, a handler can be a person who receives universal waste from other handlers or a foreign exporter, accumulates the waste, and then sends it on to other handlers, recyclers, or treatment or disposal facilities without performing the actual treatment, recycling, or disposal. This may include a person who collects batteries, pesticides, lamps, or mercury-containing equipment from small businesses and sends the waste to a recycling facility.

    The universal waste handler requirements depend on how much universal waste a handler accumulates at any one time. Small Quantity Handlers accumulate less than 5,000 kilograms and Large Quantity Handlers accumulate 5,000 kilograms or more of universal waste. All universal waste handlers are prohibited from accumulating universal waste for longer than one year from when it is generated or received (unless the handler can prove that a longer accumulation time is necessary to facilitate proper recovery, treatment, or disposal).

  • Table Summarizing the Requirements

    The table below provides a summary of requirements for U.S. exports and imports of universal waste. The requirements for exporters and importers of universal waste are very similar to the requirements for exporters and importers of hazardous waste with a few exceptions, including the RCRA manifest requirements. Refer to the table below and the RCRA Requirements for Exports of Hazardous Waste or the RCRA Requirements for Imports of Hazardous Waste for an explanation of federal requirements. Exporters of universal waste are also responsible for complying with the laws and regulations of the importing country.

    Requirement Imports of Universal Waste Exports of Universal Waste

    Definitions
    Amount of universal waste accumulated at any time determines how a handler is categorized and what regulations must be complied with

    Small Quantity Handler
    < 5,000 kg

    Large Quantity Handler
    ≥ 5,000 kg

    §273.9

    Small Quantity Handler
    < 5,000 kg

    Large Quantity Handler
    ≥ 5,000 kg

    §273.9

    Where to find Requirements

    40 CFR Part 273 Subpart F

    40 CFR Part 262 Subpart H

    40 CFR Part 273 Subparts B-D

    40 CFR Part 262, subpart H
    EPA Identification (EPA ID) Number
    Issued by authorized State program or EPA Regional office based on Form 8700-12 notification of RCRA Subtitle C activity (e.g. acting as hazardous waste exporter)
    Required
    §262.12(d)
    Required
    §262.12(d)

    Contracts
    Specifies the responsibilities of the, exporter, importer and recovery facility

    Required
    §262.84(f)

    Required
    §262.83(f)

    Notice of Intent
    Notifies EPA of the intent to export hazardous waste, such as universal waste

    Required if the country of export does not control as export of hazardous waste
    §262.84(b), §264.12(a)(1), §265.12(a)(1)

    Required
    §262.83(b)

    Acknowledgement of Consent
    EPA letter documenting the written consent of the receiving country and any transit countries to accept hazardous waste and describing the terms and conditions of consent

    Required if the country of export does not control as export of hazardous waste
    §262.84(b)(5)

    Consent required
    §262.83(a)(3)

    Submission of Electronic Export Information (EEI)
    Additional RCRA items as part of the Electronic Export Information submitted for each export shipment to the Automated Export System (AES) under the International Trade Data System (ITDS)
    Not applicable Optional until AES filing compliance date; required thereafter
    §262.83(a)(6)

    RCRA Manifest
    Contains information on the type and quantity of waste transported and instructions for handling waste and accompanies shipment from origin to recovery or disposal

    Not required by EPA, but exporter or importer should check with their state regulatory agency because certain states have additional or more stringent requirements than the federal government.  

    International Movement Document
    Includes information about the shipment, recovery facility, and transporters and accompanies the waste from origin in the country of export to recovery facility in the country of import

    Required
    §262.84(d)

    Required
    §262.83(d)(4)

    Confirmation of Receipt
    For exports, universal waste exporter must require destination facility to confirm delivery of the universal waste shipment; For imports, U.S. universal waste recycling facility must confirm delivery of the universal waste shipment

    Required
    §262.84(d)(xv); §264.12(a)(2); §264.71(d); §265.12(a)(2); §265.71(d)

    Required
    §262.83(d)(xv) and §262.83(f)(4)

    Export Exception Report
    Submit exception reports if universal waste shipment is delayed, lost, or returned to the United States

    Not applicable

    Required under circumstances specified in §262.83(h)

    Recycling Facility Notification of the Need to Arrange Alternate Management or Return of a universal waste import shipment

    Receiving facilities must inform importer, foreign exporter, and EPA of need to arrange alternate management for universal waste import shipment or to return shipment to country of export

    Required
    §262.84(f)(4)(i), §264.12(a)(3), §265.12(a)(3)
    Not applicable

    Confirmation of Recovery
    Affirms that the universal waste was recovered in the manner specified in the contract and consent

    Required
    §262.84(g), §264.12(a)(4)(i), §265.12(a)(4)(i))

    Required
    §262.83(f)(5)

    Export Annual Reporting
    Submit annual reports by March 1 of each year

    Not applicable

    Required
    §262.83(g)

    Recordkeeping
    Maintain records, including notices of intent, acknowledgements of consent, reports, and other business records for at least three (3) years

    Required for importers
    §262.84(h)(1)

    Required for TSDF destination facilities
    §264.12(a)(2); §265.12(a)(2); §264.71(d); §265.71(d); §264.74; §265.74

    Required for destination recycling facilities, including TSDFs
    §262.84(h)(2)

    Required
    §262.83(i)

Medical Waste

Medical waste is all waste materials generated at health care facilities, such as hospitals, clinics, physician's offices, dental practices, blood banks, and veterinary hospitals/clinics, as well as medical research facilities and laboratories.

During the summer of 1988, syringes and other used medical materials washed up on beaches along the Atlantic seaboard. In response to public concern about this problem, Congress enacted the Medical Waste Tracking Act in November 1988, which directed EPA to establish a two-year demonstration program to track medical waste from generation to disposal and help ensure its safe management. The demonstration program began June 22, 1989, and ended June 22, 1991.

At present, no federal RCRA export or import regulations are in effect for the transboundary shipment of medical waste, but nearly all 50 states have programs regulating medical waste that include requirements for packaging, storage and transportation of medical waste. The Department of Transportation also regulates the transport of medical waste within the United States, which would impact import and export shipments while in the United States. Other federal requirements govern the treatment and disposal of medical waste. For example, the Clean Air Act (CAA) governs emissions from medical waste incinerators, and the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) governs the antimicrobial pesticides and chemicals used in medical waste treatment. In addition to applicable U.S. federal and state requirements, exporters of medical waste are subject to the laws and regulations of the receiving country.

Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)

PCBs are synthetic chemicals that were manufactured for use in various industrial and commercial applications - including oil in electrical and hydraulic equipment, and plasticizers in paints, plastics and rubber products - because of their non-flammability, chemical stability, high boiling point and electrical insulation properties. PCBs were domestically manufactured from 1929 until their manufacture was banned in 1979. Concern over PCB toxicity and persistence in the environment led Congress to enact Section 6(e) of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) in 1976 which included prohibitions on the manufacture, processing, and distribution in commerce of PCBs.

Import and Export of PCBs

Section 6(e) of TSCA prohibits import or export of PCBs. In certain very limited circumstances, EPA may grant exemptions to allow import or export of PCBs provided statutory and regulatory requirements are met. See 40 CFR Part 761 for regulations on the import or export of PCBs.

PCBs on Vessels (Ships)

Although TSCA prohibited further manufacture, processing and distribution of PCBs, many products containing PCBs are still in use (i.e. PCB-containing electrical equipment). EPA authorizes these uses to continue as long as the equipment is properly monitored and maintained. Many ocean-going vessels built before 1979 contain PCBs in various materials including cables, electrical equipment such as capacitors and transformers, gaskets and watertight seal material, and painted surfaces.

Generally, if a vessel contains material and/or equipment with PCBs in concentrations ≥ 50 ppm, then export of that vessel for any purpose (such as scrapping) would violate the regulations and TSCA. Vessel owners must ensure that vessels do not contain regulated concentrations of PCBs (PCBs in concentrations ≥ 50 ppm) before exporting vessels for recycling or disposal. It is also the responsibility of the exporter to comply with the laws and regulations of the receiving country.

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