July 14, 2014

EPA Revises Export Requirements for CRTs

In 2006, EPA published a final rule addressing the export of cathode ray tubes (CRTs) for recycling or reuse. [71 FR 42928] Reused CRTs are products continuing to be used for their intended purpose, so they are not solid waste even if they are exported. Under the 2006 rule, CRTs destined for recycling (i.e., reclamation) also are not solid wastes when exported, provided the conditions of §§261.39 and 261.40 are met. That rule also established notification requirements that must be met before exporting CRTs.

On June 26, 2014 [79 FR 36220], EPA finalized new reporting requirements for exported CRTs. The purpose of the new reports is to gather data on actual exports. In the pre-existing regulations, the notifications provide data only on intended exports. The agency made five changes:

  1. In order to clarify who is responsible for complying with the CRT export responsibilities, including reporting, EPA has added the following definition of “CRT exporter” to §260.10:

CRT exporter means 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.”

Multiple entities may meet the definition of “CRT exporter.” The agency does not want duplicative paperwork submissions, so those regulated parties must decide who will perform the exporter duties. Nevertheless, all parties are jointly and severally liable for any regulatory noncompliance.

  1. An annual report covering CRTs exported for recycling will now be required by March 1 of each year. The report must include quantities, frequencies of shipments, and ultimate destinations (i.e., the facility or facilities where the recycling occurs) of all used CRTs exported for recycling during the previous calendar year. A certification statement is also a part of this new annual reporting requirement.
  2. In the notification that exporters must send to EPA prior to actual shipment, the name and address of each interim and final recycler or recyclers and the estimated quantity of used CRTs to be sent to each facility must now be included.
  3. The agency is now requiring periodic (rather than one-time) notifications, covering activities for periods of 12 months or less, for CRTs exported for reuse. Additional information must now be included in these periodic notices that will allow more effective compliance monitoring by EPA.
  4. Persons who export CRTs for reuse must keep copies of normal business records, such as contracts, demonstrating that each shipment of CRTs will be reused. EPA is now requiring that if the documents are written in a language other than English, an English translation of the records must be made available within 30 days if requested by the agency.

This final rule is effective December 26, 2014 in all states. EPA does not authorize states to administer federal import/export functions in any section of the RCRA hazardous waste regulations. This promotes national coordination, uniformity, and the expeditious transmission of information between the United States and foreign countries. Although states would not receive authorization to administer the federal government’s export functions in the June 2014 rule, state programs are still required to adopt provisions in the rule that are more stringent than pre-existing federal requirements to maintain their equivalency with the federal program. [79 FR 36228] Thus, for example, persons who export used, intact CRTs for reuse must comply with the revised notification requirements (in Item 4 above) as of December 26, 2014, regardless of whether or not they have already submitted a one-time notification under the previous requirements. [79 FR 36226]

 


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