Things You Need to Know
If you operate a small business that generates hazardous waste or waste oil, here are some important things you need to know.
- You must register with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) to obtain a permanent identification number (ID) for legally generating and accumulating waste. Always use this number on manifests to ensure proper recycling, treatment, and disposal.
- If you are a Very Small Quantity Generator (VSQG; less than 27 gallons per month) of either hazardous waste or waste oil, or a Small Quantity Generator (SQG; between 27 and 270 gallons per month) of waste oil, use a MassDEP Generator Registration Form to assign yourself a permanent ID (the prefix "MV" + your telephone number with area code).
- If you are a SQG of hazardous waste or a Large Quantity Generator (LQG; more than 270 gallons per month) of hazardous waste or waste oil, contact MassDEP for instructions on how to obtain an ID number.
- If your business registered in the past but has moved to a new location, you need to submit another Generator Registration Form to MassDEP.
- Generating and accumulating hazardous waste or waste oil without a valid ID carries fines of up to $1,000 per day. If you do not use a valid ID on a manifest, you will be making a false statement, which can result in additional fines of up to $1,000 per day. A "temporary" ID is not acceptable.
- If you generate or accumulate hazardous waste without an ID, you may be operating an unlicensed treatment, storage, or disposal facility - a violation that carries fines of up to $25,000 per day.
- Your hazardous waste transporter has the authority to refuse your shipments if you do not have your own valid ID, and might report you to MassDEP.
- Your insurance company may ask you to prove that you have a valid ID before issuing or renewing your property and/or casualty policy.
Hazardous Waste Management Compliance Tips
To avoid MassDEP citations and penalties:
- Keep Copy 3 of every hazardous waste manifest for at least three years.
- Be sure that your containers and tanks are: closed when you are not adding waste to them, labeled with the required information, and stored on or above a crack-free surface in a separate, designated indoor storage area marked "HAZARDOUS WASTE" or "WASTE OIL."
- Take steps to prevent spills onto the ground, or into drains or catch basins.
- Restrict storage area access to authorized staff only.
For more compliance information see the Small Quantity Generator (SQG) of Hazardous Waste Guidance .