April 18, 2023

Inspection Checklists and Tools for Hazardous Secondary Materials Recycling

If your facility recycles hazardous secondary materials (HSM), the regulatory status of the HSM and the units in which it is managed are dependent on many factors. Thus, it is a good idea to periodically evaluate your HSM recycling processes using the tools and checklists provided by EPA to ensure you are maintaining compliance.

EPA recently updated its inspection checklist tool for facilities generating and recycling HSM. This guidance is also designed to assist regulators monitoring HSM recycling compliance. The guidance begins with a checklist for the overall recycling process, covering the main requirements and criteria for making a recycling determination. As the facility makes its way through the checklist, the answers will help determine whether the HSM being recycled is a solid and hazardous waste. This is an important distinction because HSM that is not solid waste is not subject to RCRA regulation.

The remainder of the guidance is a series of appendices, each one reviewing a specific recycling requirement. The appendices also provide additional checklists and resources to help make HSM recycling determinations. The appendices cover:

Additional Resources

The agency has some additional resources that can assist in making HSM recycling determinations:


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This document addresses issues of a general nature related to the federal RCRA regulations. Persons evaluating specific circumstances dealing with the RCRA regulations should review state and local laws and regulations, which may be more stringent than federal requirements. In addition, the assistance of a qualified professional should be enlisted to address any site-specific circumstances.