1. Instructions: General Permit Initial Certification doc format of Instructions: General Permit Certification
pdf format of                             Instructions: General Permit Certification

  2. Form: General Permit Initial Certification doc format of Form: General Permit Certification
pdf format of                             Form: General Permit Certification

Fact Sheet 

This certification form will be used to satisfy the certification requirements for a General Permit for New or Newly Acquired Recycling, Composting and Aerobic or Anaerobic Digestion Operations pursuant to 310 CMR 16.04. The owner or operator will file this certification with the MassDEP Boston Office and with the local Board of Health at least thirty (30) days prior to commencing operations.  

All recycling, composting, and aerobic or anaerobic digestion operations are also required to submit an annual certification by February 15 to:

MassDEP (Main Telephone: 617-292-5500)
Bureau of Waste Prevention
Attn: Solid Waste Program -16.04 General Permit Certification
One Winter Street
Boston, MA 02108

The annual certification form will be available by January 1, 2014. For the complete text of the regulation, see:  310 CMR 16.00: Site Assignment Regulations for Solid Waste Facilities


  • This certification form is only for the following types of operations that handle less than the listed maximum tonnage limits. Operations which exceed these tonnage limits may be eligible for a Recycling, Composting or Conversion (RCC) permit pursuant to 310 CMR 16.05.
Operations Eligible for a General Permit under 310 CMR 16.04
Type of OperationMaximum Material Limits
Recycling Operations
  • Receives no more than 250 tons per day of recyclable materials, not including paper [310 CMR 16.04(1)(a)].
Composting Operations
  • Receives no more than 105 tons per week and no more than 30 tons per day of Group 2 organic materials [see below or 310 CMR 16.04(1)(b)] AND
  • Contains no more than 5,000 cubic yards of organic material per acre AND
  • Has no more than 50,000 cubic yards total of organic material on site at one time.
Aerobic or Anaerobic Digestion Operations
  •  Receives no more than 100 tons per day of organic material from on-site or off-site, based on a 30-day rolling average[310 CMR 16.04(1)(c)]
  • Composting Operations will meet certain limits on the amounts of material that is likely to become putrescible in order to be eligible for a General Permit. These materials are identified in 310 CMR 16.04(3) as having a carbon to nitrogen ratio of 30:1 or less, and are designated as "Group 2" materials. "Group 1" materials are organic materials with a carbon to nitrogen ration of 50:1 or more.  The table below (reproduced from 310 CMR 16.04(3) Table 1) provides examples of materials in each group and may be used for reference purposes in completing this certification form.  
Examples of Organic Materials
Group 1 Organic MaterialsGroup 2 Organic Materials
Example MaterialsC:N RatioExample MaterialsC:N Ratio
Clean Wood100-1300:1Vegetables11-19:1
Cardboard560:1Food Material14-16:1
Paper & Paper Products125-850:1Grass Clippings17:1
Leaves40-80:1Green Plant Material15-19:1
Straw60-80:1Fish Waste2-5:1
Corn Stalks60-75:1Manure6-14:1
Shrub Trimmings50:1Solid & Liquid Digestate from Aerobic &
Anaerobic Digestion Processes

Source:  U.S. Composting Council, Best Management Practices (BMPs) for Incorporating Food Residuals Into Existing yard Waste Composting Operations, p. 20. found at http://compostingcouncil.org/admin/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/BMP-for-FW-to-YW.pdf

  • A Responsible Official (as defined in 310 CMR 16.02) will complete this certification for the operation.
  • Complete the appropriate sections of the form for your type of operation:
    • Sections I-V for recycling operations.
    • Sections I-IV, VI and VII for composting operations.
    • Sections I-IV, VI and VII for aerobic or anaerobic digestion operations.
    • Section IX (Certification) for ALL operations.
  • The Responsible Official completing this certification form should make and keep a signed copy of the completed certification form for record keeping purposes.
  • Remember that it is your responsibility to keep your facility in compliance with environmental protection requirements at all times. You may be subject to enforcement action if you do not comply with the standards.