Hazardous waste facilities that treat, store, and/or disposes of waste are called Treatment, Storage, and Disposal Facilities (TSDF). These facilities must have a permit or approval to construct and operate.
Treatment facilities use various processes such as blending, neutralization, incineration, and making the waste less hazardous or alter its physical, chemical or biological character or composition. Incineration is used for destructing the waste to reduce volume but may have energy or material recovery.
Storage facilities temporarily hold waste before treatment or disposal.
A disposal facility is where waste is place in or on the land (landfills, underground injection).
Hazardous waste facilities needing a permit:
- Facilities that receive "off-site" hazardous waste for storage, treatment, or disposal
- Large Quantity Generators (LQGs) who store hazardous waste onsite for more than 90 days
- Small Quantity Generators (SQGs) who store hazardous waste onsite for more than one 180 days. Exception: SQGs may accumulate hazardous waste on site for 270 days without a permit if they ship the hazardous waste to a TSDF that is more than 200 miles away.
- Any generator of hazardous waste who treats the waste in something other than a tank, container, containment building, drip pads, or disposes of the waste on-site.
A permit is a legally binding document that defines the activities allowed at the facility and the conditions under which they may be conducted. It outlines facility design, process information, emergency plans, and employee training plans. IDEM has the authority to issue or deny permits, and is responsible for monitoring the facility to ensure that it is complying with the conditions of the permit.
Types of Hazardous Waste TSD Operations
Container Storage or Treatment
Containers represent one of the most commonly used and diverse forms of units for hazardous waste storage. Containers are mobile, allowing an owner or operator to use only one unit for storage, transportation, and disposal. The regulations covering management of hazardous waste stored in containers are found in 40 CFR Part 264 and 40 CFR Part 265, Subpart I.
Tank Storage or Treatment
Tank is a stationary device. Tanks are widely used for storage, accumulation and/or treatment of hazardous waste because they can accommodate large volumes, and because of their structural strength. Tanks must comply with the regulations in 40 CFR Part 264 and 40 CFR Part 265, Subpart J.
Drip pads are hazardous waste management units that are unique to the wood preserving industry to collect dripping preservatives from the wood treatment. These are mostly managed as generator units. There are no permitted drip pads in Indiana. The design standards for drip pads are in 40 CFR 264.573 and 40 CFR 265.443.
A containment building is a completely enclosed structure (i.e., possessing four walls, a roof, and a floor) that houses an accumulation of non-containerized waste. Containment buildings are designated as hazardous waste management units to address the difficulties associated with management of bulky, large volume hazardous wastes and to comply with the land disposal restrictions. Regulations to containment buildings are in 40 CFR Part 264 and 40 CFR Part 265, Subpart DD.
Incineration is a commonly employed technology used to destroy hazardous waste. However, some energy or material recovery may occur. 40 CFR Part 264 subpart O standards for hazardous waste incinerators primarily regulate the emissions that result from the combustion process. Specifically, the regulations restrict the emissions of organics, hydrogen chloride (HCl), and particulate matter (PM), as well as fugitive emissions.
Waste piles are essentially noncontainerized piles of solid, nonflowing hazardous waste, in temporary units used for storage or treatment only (40 CFR 260.10). Regulations governing the management of hazardous waste in waste piles are found in 40 CFR 264 Subpart L. There are no permitted waste piles currently in Indiana.
Surface impoundments are either a natural topographic depression, manmade excavation, or diked area formed primarily of earthen materials, such as soil (although the unit may be lined with manmade materials) generally used for temporary storage or treatment of liquid waste. 40 CFR 264 Subpart K contains the design and operating standards for surface impoundments. There are no permitted hazardous waste surface impoundments currently in Indiana.
Landfills are used as final disposal sites. They are monitored during their entire active life, including closure, and the post-closure period. The regulations concerning hazardous waste landfills are in 40 CFR 264 Subpart N.
Land Treatment Units
Land treatment involves the application of waste on the soil surface or the incorporation of waste into the upper layers of the soil in order to degrade, transform, or immobilize hazardous constituents present in hazardous waste. Essentially, the waste is treated within the matrix of the surface soil. The regulations for hazardous waste land treatment units are in 40 CFR 264 Subpart M. There are no permitted hazardous waste land treatment units currently in Indiana.
Miscellaneous units cover diverse technologies and units, including chemical, physical and biological treatment and under-ground injection. Miscellaneous units should be located, designed, constructed, operated, maintained, and closed in a manner that will prevent any unsafe releases into the groundwater, subsurface environment, surface water, wetlands, soil surface, or air. The regulations are in 40 CFR 264 Subpart X. These regulations are general, not technology-specific.
U.S. EPA provides a training module with additional information on these units.