US EPA has approved the delegation for its hazardous waste programs to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC or DEC) relating to used oil management. New York had applied to EPA for final authorization of changes to its hazardous waste program under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). This final authorization will become effective on May 10, 2013 unless EPA receives adverse written comment by April 10, 2013.
States which have received final authorization from EPA under RCRA must maintain a hazardous waste program that is equivalent to, consistent with, and no less stringent than the Federal program. As the Federal program changes, States must change their programs and ask EPA to authorize the changes. Changes to State programs may be necessary when Federal or State statutory or regulatory authority is modified or when certain other changes occur. Most commonly, States must change their programs because of changes to EPA’s regulations in 40 Code CFR parts 124, 260 through 268, 270, 273 and 279.
In 2008, New York submitted a program revision application, seeking authorization of its changes in accordance with 40 CFR 271.21. New York’s revision application included changes to the Federal Hazardous Waste program as addressed by the federal used oil management regulations that were published on September 10, 1992 EPA concluded that New York’s application to revise its authorized program meets all of the statutory and regulatory requirements established by RCRA. Therefore, EPA granted New York final authorization to operate its hazardous waste program with the changes described in the authorization application. New York has responsibility for permitting Treatment, Storage, and Disposal Facilities (TSDFs) within its borders (except in Indian Country) and for carrying out the aspects of the RCRA program described in its revised program application, subject to the limitations of the Hazardous and Solid Waste Amendments of 1984 (HSWA).
The effect of this decision is that a facility in New York subject to RCRA will now have to comply with the authorized State requirements instead of the equivalent Federal requirements in order to comply with RCRA. New York has enforcement responsibilities under its State hazardous waste program for violations of such program, but EPA retains its authority under RCRA. This includes the authority to:
- Do inspections, and require monitoring, tests, analyses, reports or other actions
- Enforce RCRA requirements and suspend or revoke permits
- Take enforcement actions regardless of whether the State has taken its own actions.