Texas Adopts Universal Waste Rule Amendments

On May 20, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) formally adopted amendments to its Universal Waste Rule for Paint and Paint-related Waste (see §335.262 on pages 216-219). Notably, ACA was able to convince TCEQ to revise the definition of “paint” and add a definition for “paint-related waste.” The amendments are consistent with Ohio EPA’s UW Rule for PPRW and provide more clarity on what paint products and materials fall under its universal waste rule standards. TCEQ’s amended definition is as follows:

(b) Paint and paint-related waste is used or unused paint or paint-related waste which is “hazardous waste” as defined under §335.1 of this title (relating to Definitions), as determined under §335.504 of this title (relating to Hazardous Waste Determination). Paint is a pigmented or unpigmented mixture of binder and suitable liquid which forms a closely adherent coating when spread on a surface. Paint-related waste is material contaminated with paint that results from the packaging of paint, wholesale and retail operations, paint manufacturing, and paint application or removal activities, or a material derived from the reclamation of paint-related wastes that is recycled in a manner other than burning for energy recovery or used in a manner constituting disposal.

TCEQ made these amendments so that the state’s regulations are consistent with certain federal solid and hazardous waste requirements and with the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). The regulated communities affected by this rulemaking are businesses and industries involved in the generation, transportation, treatment, storage, recycling, and/or disposal of hazardous waste and industrial solid waste.

ACA had actively sought amendments to the Texas Universal Waste Rule for PPRW aligned with what TCEQ adopted.

The amendments are scheduled to be published on TCEQ’s website on June 5 and become effective on June 11.

Background

In February, ACA submitted comments on TCEQ’s proposed amendments to the state’s Universal Waste Rule for PPRW. At that time, TCEQ proposed to amend its definition of PPRW under the regulation as follows:

(b) Paint and paint-related waste is used or unused paint or [and] paint-related material which is “hazardous waste” as defined under §335.1 of this title (relating to Definitions), as determined under §335.504 of this title (relating to Hazardous Waste Determination). Paint is a pigmented or unpigmented mixture of binder and [, and which is any mixture of pigment and a] suitable liquid which forms a closely adherent coating when spread on a surface [or any material which results from painting activities].

In its comments, ACA expressed support for the proposed amendments, noting that it will provide clarity for industry on what products and materials fall under the new definition of the regulation. However, ACA sought to further erase any ambiguity with more precise definitions of “paint-related waste” and “paint-related material.”

ACA suggested the following definitions:

Paint-related waste is material contaminated with paint or paint-related material that results from the packaging of paint, wholesale and retail operations, paint manufacturing, and paint application or removal activities, or a material derived from the reclamation of paint-related wastes that is recycled in a manner other than burning for energy recovery or used in a manner constituting disposal.”

Paint-related material is a paint thinning, drying, reducing or removing compound, curing agent, hardener, or any similar type of material.”

Ultimately, TCEQ accepted ACA’s suggested definition for “paint-related waste”, which is consistent with Ohio EPA’s definition of the same term, but rejected ACA’s suggested language for “paint-related material.”

ACA firmly believes that TCEQ’s amended rule will provide additional clarity and guidance on what paint and paint-related waste products fall under the state’s universal waste regulations.

Contact ACA’s Rhett Cash for more information.

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