Regulation of Paint Filters

David Friedman, Manager
Waste Analysis Program (WH-565B)

Chet McLaughlin, Chief
State Programs Section (Region VII)

Recently you indicated that the States of Iowa and Kansas have raised questions concerning the regulation of paint filters removed from spray booths.  The questions revolve around how we regulate those filters which are hazardous wastes when removed from the spray booth but not after immersion  in water.

I will try to answer the specific questions raised in your memo (a copy of which is attached).

1.  In calculating the quantity of hazardous waste generated, it is the weight of spent filters (including
occluded paint) that is used.  Generators are responsible for evaluating their waste to determine whether it is a
hazardous waste or not.  If necessary they may have to test their waste to make such an evaluation.  However, many times testing is not required.  The necessary evaluation can be made on the basis of engineering calculations.  If the water fails the EP toxicity test it is also a hazardous waste and its weight would be added to that of the filters.

2.  Waste paint filters are handled the same as any other hazardous waste relative to the small generator exemption.

3.  I am not sure why this particular waste needs special treatment in the hazardous waste system other than perhaps for a streamlined system of obtaining treatment permits for the hazardous mitigation operation (the 55 gallon drum filled with water).  Except in the case of the EP Toxic waters, the immersed filters are not hazardous wastes and can be placed in a sanitary landfill at will, whether the generator is a large or small generator.

I hope I have answered your questions.  If not give me a call at 8-755-9187 (382-4806 after September 30).


cc:  Lehman

WH-565B:DFRIEDMAN:pes:x59187:9-15-82  DISK PS-57-15




DATE:     August 19, 1982

SUBJECT:  Regulation of Paint Filters

FROM:     Chet McLaughlin, Chief
          State Programs Section

TO:       Allan Corson, (WH-565)
          Chief Waste Characterization Branch

The State of Kansas and Iowa have raised a series of problems with the regulation of pain filters from pray booths especially those generated infrequently and in small numbers.  When these filters are removed, they can be subject to self ignition and are usually treated by immediately immersing them in water.  Typically these individual filters are then transporter to a nearby sanitary landfill and immediately buried to prevent auto ignition.  This
produces the potential for the container, water, filter and waste to become hazardous waste subject to handling as such.

The alternative is to allow the filter to ignite and burn releasing small quantities of potentially hazardous air
contaminants and handling of the ash a appropriate.

The questions raised by the states on this subject are several:

1.  Do they consider the weight of the paint or paint and filter for the generation quantity?  Does the container and water have to be tested before it can be disposed?  If the water fails the EP toxicity test must it be handled as a hazardous waste?

2.  Do they have to require the handling of filters as a hazardous waste at firms where other wastes achieve the 1000 kg./mo level and allow the others to be treated as small quantity generators able to use sanitary landfills?

3.  Assuming the petition route is not appropriate, the use of enforcement discretion is apparently the only available mechanism to allow the states to assume equal treatment and safe handling of  this particular wastes?  Are others under consideration?

4.  Can they anticipate any regulation interpretation memorandum on this related subjects in the next several months?