NTIS: SUB-9224-98-002
EPA: 530-R-98-005b
1. Storage of Mixed Waste in Violation of RCRA 3004(j) Storage Prohibition
RCRA 3004(j) prohibits the storage of any prohibited hazardous waste, including
radioactive mixed waste, except for the purpose of accumulating quantities necessary to
facilitate proper waste recovery, treatment, or disposal (268.50). A "prohibited"
hazardous waste is a waste ineligible for land disposal unless it meets the land disposal
restrictions treatment standards found in 268.40 and is currently subject to those
standards. EPA has concluded that when no viable treatment for the waste exists, storage
of a waste pending development of such treatment technology does not "constitute storage
to accumulate sufficient quantities to facilitate proper treatment or disposal" (61 FR 18588;
April 26, 1996). While the Federal Facility Compliance Act of 1992 (FFCA) did exempt
certain Department of Energy (DOE) facilities storing mixed waste from 3004(j), it did
not exclude non-DOE and commercial facilities. How does EPA enforce the RCRA
3004(j) storage prohibition at non-DOE and commercial facilities currently storing mixed
waste in violation of this provision?
In response to the current lack of treatment and disposal capacity for mixed
waste, EPA has established an enforcement policy for facilities storing mixed
waste in violation of the RCRA 3004(j) storage prohibition (56 FR 42730; August
29,1991). The policy states that commercial facilities storing mixed waste in
violation of 3004(j) due to a lack of available treatment or disposal capacity are
considered by EPA to be a reduced or low priority among potential civil
enforcement actions as long as the waste is managed in an environmentally
responsible manner. The enforcement policy applies only to those facilities
generating small amounts of mixed waste. EPA believes a facility is managing
its mixed waste in an environmentally responsible manner when it can
demonstrate that it has: conducted an inventory of the facility's mixed waste
storage areas to assess and assure compliance with all other applicable RCRA
storage standards; identified and maintained records of all mixed wastes
generated; developed and implemented, where feasible, a mixed waste
minimization plan; and documented good faith efforts to find available
treatment technologies and disposal capacity for its stored mixed waste. The
enforcement policy does not apply to prohibited mixed wastes for which
treatment technology or disposal capacity exists, or becomes available prior to
April 1998.
EPA's primary enforcement concern is with violations of 3004(j) by generators
who are storing mixed wastes for which treatment or disposal capacity is

Faxback 14171
available, or who are not managing their waste in an environmentally
responsible manner. It is important to note that the enforcement policy applies
only to civil judicial and administrative enforcement, and does not extend to
criminal violations of RCRA, for which the U.S. Attorney General has sole
prosecutorial discretion.
The original enforcement policy was scheduled to terminate on December 31,
1993,	with the provision that EPA may renew it beyond 1993 if necessary. Since
that time, EPA has extended the enforcement policy twice. The first extension, in
1994,	extended the policy for two years, until April 20,1996 (59 FR 18813; April
20,1994). This extension did not apply to executive branch federal facilities, as
these facilities were still eligible for the FFCA's three-year delay of the waiver of
sovereign immunity. The Second extension came in 1996 and set the expiration
date of April 20,1998 (61 FR 18588; April 26,1996). Since the FFCA three-year
delay has expired, the enforcement policy now applies to executive branch
federal facilities other than DOE and joint Navy/DOE Naval Nuclear Propulsion
Program (NNPP) facilities.