Requirements for Hazardous Waste Treatment, Storage, and Disposal Facilities (TSDF):
Air Emissions– The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act placed requirements on TSDFs regarding air emissions. In particular, the goal was to limit the emission of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from vents, waste treatment processes, equipment, and storage devices (impoundments, tanks, containers).
Closure– Once a TSDF decides to shut down operations and cease to manage hazardous waste, the EPA has established requirements which a facility must adhere to in order to prevent future threats to human and environmental health. There are a set of general requirements that apply to all hazardous waste TSDFs, as well as particular guidelines for specific facilities such as landfills or incinerators.
Corrective Action/Hazardous Waste Cleanup– If any releases or spills of hazardous waste occur at a TSDF, RCRA requires that corrective action immediately take place. The first step is for the facility to investigate and then remediate the hazardous release. Under the RCRA Corrective Action Program, facilities are allowed to take remedial action themselves. If a facility has already closed or been abandoned and is listed as a RCRA site, cleanup can occur under the Superfund program
Financial Assurance– Another requirement for a TSDF under RCRA regards financial assurance. A TSDF must demonstrate that it has the financial capability to appropriately close their facility when operations have been shut down or respond adequately to any case of a spill or hazardous release.
Ground Water Monitoring–One of the greatest potential threats posed by TSDF’s is the contamination of groundwater. RCRA outlines the ground water monitoring process that a facility must comply with to ensure that groundwater isn’t being contaminated. TSDFs are required to install monitoring wells and regularly sample the groundwater for pollutants.
Land Disposal Restrictions– Most commonly referred to be the acronym LDR, land disposal requirements, were created by the EPA to provide extra protection against groundwater contamination from hazardous waste. The LDR lists a set of standards requiring all hazardous waste to go through treatment before being sent to the landfill for final disposal.
Permits and Permitting–The permitting system required by RCRA for TSDFs seeks to ensure that all hazardous waste management practices comply with applicable regulations.