News | September 5, 2017

EPA Supports North Carolina's Efforts To Safely Manage Hazardous Waste

Awards $1M Dollar Grant To North Carolina Department Of Environmental Quality

Recently, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency awarded $1,018,260 to the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality for their hazardous waste programs.

“The people of North Carolina know and cherish their land," said Administrator Pruitt. "This grant helps the state run important programs to safely manage hazards while protecting their environment."

The grant provides funding under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), which regulates solid and hazardous waste. The money will support NCDEQ’s RCRA program activities, including efforts to minimize hazardous waste production and oversee the safe handling, treatment, storage and disposal of hazardous wastes across the state.

NCDEQ will focus on hazardous waste generators that have never been inspected (156 large quantity generators and 52 small quantity generators), non-notifiers, repeat violators and facilities that are the subject of citizen complaints. The state will also assist newly regulated facilities, facilities subject to new regulations and facilities with compliance issues achieve compliance. The state will review groundwater reports for permitted waste disposal facilities to identify and correct deficiencies. North Carolina manages 85 permitted facilities and is conducting corrective action at over 90 facilities that are permitted and under a corrective action order.

Portions of the funding will also support North Carolina’s efforts to remove hazardous chemicals from schools and from vehicles at the end of their life. Technical assistance will be provided to the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction regarding responsible chemical management in schools. Separately, NCDEQ will continue to assist, monitor and enforce the removal of mercury-containing switches from vehicles prior to crushing, shredding or smelting. As part of its outreach to vehicle dismantlers, NCDEQ will also encourage recycling of lead tire weights.

RCRA is the federal law that establishes the framework for proper management of solid and hazardous waste. RCRA regulations protect communities by ensuring safe management and cleanup of solid and hazardous waste and encouraging reduction of pollution sources and beneficial reuse of formerly contaminated properties. Most of the compliance monitoring responsibility under RCRA is delegated states and EPA provides oversight.

This funding is EPA’s third award to fully fund NCDEQ in fiscal year 2017. NCDEQ initially received $1,352,976 to support their hazardous waste-related environmental programs.

More information about RCRA compliance: www.epa.gov/rcra.

SOURCE: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency