United States             Solid Waste and                 EPA530-F-01-003
                 Environmental Protection     Emergency Response                January 2001
                 Agency                 (5305W)                      www.epa.gov/osw
                 Office of Solid Waste

s>EPA    Environmental

                 Fact  Sheet	

                 SYSTEM TO  BE STREAMLINED

                    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposes to improve the Uniform
                 Hazardous Waste Manifest system by automating procedures and standardizing the
                 manifest form. Waste handlers could realize savings between $24-$37 million a year,
                 and states could save  up to 25 percent in manifest-related costs while ensuring the
                 continuous, safe management of hazardous waste.
     For more than 15 years, hazardous waste handlers have been required to ship their
  hazardous wastes according to the Uniform Hazardous Waste Manifest system. The
  manifest form provides a complete paper trail of a waste's progress from a generator
  through its treatment, storage, and disposal. The form identifies the type and quantity
  of the hazardous waste being shipped, the transportation companies that will transport
  the waste, and the permitted facility that will treat, store, or dispose of the waste. In
  addition, the manifest form also contains a generator's certification of waste
  minimization practices.

     Whenever a waste handler takes custody of a waste shipment, it must sign the
  accompanying manifest to acknowledge its receipt and thus create a record of the
  shipment's chain of custody.  When the waste shipment is finally delivered to the
  permitted facility selected to manage the waste, the receiving facility must sign the
  manifest, retain a copy as a record, and return a signed copy to the generator who
  originated the shipment.  This closes the accountability circle and enables the generator
  to verify that the shipment reached its final destination. Either EPA or a state agency
  must be notified for appropriate action when a generator does not receive a final
  manifest verification, or when a handler discovers that the shipment actually received
  does not match the description of the waste on the manifest.

     The regulations for generators and transporters in 40 CFR Parts 262-263 are affected
  by this proposal. Related requirements for owners and operators of treatment, storage,
  and disposal facilities in Parts 264-265 are also affected, along with state requirements
  in Part 271.

     EPA proposes options to change the Uniform Hazardous Waste Manifest  system.
  Mainly, these changes would allow waste handlers the option of using an electronic

manifest to track their waste shipments, and would standardize further the manifest
form and procedures.

   The proposed rule would enable waste handlers to conduct nearly all the waste
tracking and recordkeeping functions of the manifest electronically. The proposal
announces standard electronic data interchange and Internet formats that could be used
for originating and transmitting the manifest. Under the proposal, the electronic
manifest would be signed electronically either with a public key/private key encryption
method known as a "digital signature," or with a "secure digitized signature" that uses a
digitizer pad and stylus to create a graphic image of a handwritten signature. The
proposal also includes computer security controls to protect the integrity of data and to
ensure that electronic manifests are processed and stored securely and accurately.

   The automation options should significantly reduce the manifest paperwork burden,
and should also improve the tracking of hazardous waste shipments. Although waste
handlers still may opt to use a paper manifest, the Agency expects that automation will
provide better and more timely data on waste shipments for both waste handlers and

   The Agency intends to eliminate manifest variability by further standardizing the
content and appearance of the manifest form. The new standard format announced in
the proposal could be used in all states. These proposed changes would eliminate  the
different manifest forms that are currently required by many authorized states, and also
make it possible to obtain forms from  a greater number of sources. All manifest forms
would be printed according to a precise specification to assure uniformity. Each form
would have a unique, preprinted manifest tracking number. Under this option, for
example, a waste handler with multistate operations could register and use its own
manifest forms everywhere they do business. EPA would oversee the process by which
states, waste handlers, or other printers would be registered to print the standard form
according to EPA's specifications.

   This proposal affects 92,000 businesses in 45 economic sectors that conduct hazardous waste
manifest-related activities.  These include about 90,000 small and large quantity waste  generators, 500
waste transporters, and 2,000 treatment, storage, and disposal facilities in 24 states. Simply
automating the manifest form could save up to $27million a year.

For  More Information
   The Federal Register notice, this fact sheet, and related documents are available on
the Internet at http://www.epa.gov/epaoswer/hazwaste/gener/manifest/index.htm. For
additional information, or to order paper copies of any documents, call the RCRA Call
Center. Callers within the Washington Metropolitan Area please dial 703-412-9810 or
TDD 703-412-3323 (hearing impaired). Long-distance callers please call 1-800-424-9346
or TDD 1-800-553-7672. The RCRA Call Center operates weekdays, 9:00 a.m. to  6:00 p.m.
Address written requests to: RCRA-Docket@epa.gov or RCRA Information Center
(5305W), 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20460.