The Hazardous Waste Generator Program covers businesses that generate any quantity of hazardous waste. Hazardous wastes must be stored in a way to prevent accidental discharge. The Certified Unified Program Agency, Environmental Health, conducts annual inspections of businesses generating hazardous waste to determine compliance with State laws and local ordinances. Facilities regulated under the hazardous waste program will be classified into one of the following categories based on the type and volume of hazardous waste generated onsite.
Small Quantity Generators (SQG)
SQGs are those facilities that generate less than 1,000 Kg in any calendar month. SQGs may generate up to 1 Kg of acutely hazardous waste per month. Facilities that are Small Quantity Generators may store hazardous waste onsite for up to 180 days.
Large Quantity Generators (LQG)
LQGs are those that generate more than 1,000 Kg of hazardous waste, or more than 1 Kg of acutely hazardous waste, within a calendar month. Facilities that are Large Quantity Generators may store waste onsite for up to 90 days.
Very Small Quantity Generators (VSQG)
VSQGs are those that generate less than 100 Kg of hazardous waste, or less than 1 Kg of acutely hazardous waste, within a calendar month. VSQGs cannot accumulate more than 1,000 Kg of hazardous waste onsite at any one time. For more info to see if your businesses qualify visit: rcwaste.org.
During an inspection you will be evaluated against requirements found in California Code of Regulations and California Health and Safety Code pertaining to the storage of hazardous wastes. Generally, proper storage includes all of the following:
- Waste stored in a way that minimizes its possibility of fire, explosion, or release.
- Maximum allowable accumulation time limits have been followed. Storage times vary based upon the quantity of waste generated. See the preceding section regarding facility classification for time limits.
- Incompatible waste streams shall be kept separate.
- Containers must be appropriate and compatible with the type of waste being stored in them.
- Containers must be properly labeled with the words “Hazardous Waste,” the name and address of the generator, the composition and physical state of the waste, hazardous properties of the waste and the accumulation start date.
- Containers must be in good condition (E.g., no cracks, holes, or dents that could potentially decrease structural integrity).
- Containers cannot be leaking.
- Containers shall be stored closed, except when adding or removing wastes.
- Ignitable or reactive wastes must be stored a minimum of 50 feet from the property line. (Note: this requirement only applies to LQGs.)