Massachusetts Law requires companies that produce hazardous waste to store and dispose of this waste in a special manner. Any one, other than a household, who produces, transports, recycles, treats or disposes of hazardous waste must notify the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) and meet certain requirements (See: 310 CMR 30.000: Massachusetts Hazardous Waste Regulations ).

This fact sheet provides highlights of the regulations and will assist you in completing the Application for EPA Identification Number, or MassDEP Registration Form, if you are a Very Small Quantity Generator and/or Small Quantity Generator of used oil.

Definition of a Hazardous Waste

Federal and state hazardous waste laws define waste as "hazardous" if it is ignitable (has a flash point of 140? F or less), corrosive (ph of less than 2.5 or greater than 12.5), reactive, or toxic (as determined by a laboratory test). Other wastes are listed by name in the regulations.

  • Typical hazardous wastes from furniture manufacturing or finishing
  • Ignitable wastes
  • Stripping sludges
  • Rags and other cleanup materials contaminated with paint, lacquer, solvent or sludge
  • Spent dipping solutions, such as methylene chloride
  • Nitrocellulose overspray and residue (gun cotton)
  • Surplus or off-spec paints, lacquers, solvents
  • Corrosive wastes
  • Spent acid or alkaline baths

Some rinsewaters may also be hazardous and should not be put down the drain. No rinse waters can be disposed down the drain to a septic system without a permit.

Highlights of the Massachusetts Hazardous Waste Regulations

As a generator of hazardous waste you can be liable for any clean-up costs resulting from mismanagement of your waste, at your location, while it is in transit or at the receiving facility. To comply with the regulations and to decrease your risks:

  • Identify and count the volume of your hazardous waste
  • Store each type of waste in a separate container
  • Keep containers closed except to add or remove waste
  • Label each container or tank with:
    Add the date accumulation began if you are not a Very Small Generator.
  • Train your employees to handle hazardous wastes safely
  • Report spills of hazardous waste and hazardous materials to MassDEPShip your waste with a licensed hazardous waste transporter (If you qualify as a Very Small Quantity Generator, you may be able to bring your waste to a community hazardous waste collection.)Keep records of where it goes for at least three years

Your generator "status" is determined by the amount of hazardous waste you generate in a month's time:

  • Very Small Quantity Generator (VSQG) : Less than 27 gallons a month
  • Small Quantity Generator (SQG) : Between 27 and 270 gallons a month
  • Large Quantity Generator (LQG) : More than 270 gallons a month

For more details, consult: Summary of Small Quantity Generator (SQG) Requirements, July 2014  pdf format of Summary of Small Quantity Generator (SQG) Requirements
doc format of                             Summary of Small Quantity Generator (SQG) Requirements

Completing the Application for EPA Identification Number:

SIC (Standard Industrial Classification)
Type of BusinessSIC
Built-in cabinets2434
Free-standing cabinets5712
Furniture stripping7641
Household furniture2511
Office furniture2521
Wood preserving2491
Wood products2499
Waste Codes (Section C of EPA Application)
Ignitable wastesD001
Corrosive wastesD002
Surplus lacquers, solventsF003, F005

Important Contacts

MassDEP offers compliance assistance on the Web and by phone (617-292-5898).

If your shop is on a septic system, contact the MassDEP industrial wastewater program at 617-292-5503 for information about holding tanks and containers.

To report a spill of oil or hazardous material, call the 24-hour MassDEP Emergency Response hotline at 888-304-1133.