Ecology News: State Solid and Hazardous Waste Plan- Moving Washington Beyond Waste and Toxics

Here is a sample of work the Department of Ecology and our partners around the state have been doing to support the goals in the State Solid and Hazardous Waste Plan – Moving Washington Beyond Waste and Toxics:

o   Cascadia Consulting group, working with FCS and Abbe & Associates, is working on identifying potential sustainable funding mechanisms for components of Washington’s solid waste system. The process will include two surveys (the first has already been sent out to this Listserv), with a final report expected in June 2017.

o   For more information, contact Janine Bogar, 360-407-6654

o   The 2016 Statewide Waste Characterization Study is done, providing updated data from the last study, which was completed in 2009. The largest components in our waste stream, by weight, continue to be organics and paper. This study also provides a breakdown of products versus packaging, as well as edible (at the time of disposal) versus inedible food.

o   For more information, contact Gretchen Newman, 360-407-6097

  • Northwest Region Commingled Recycling Report and Next Steps

(Supports Goal SWM 5, Actions 5A and 5B on page 27 in the Solid Waste and Materials section)

o   Ecology led a large, diverse and dedicated group of stakeholders who researched and wrote this informative report, titled Optimizing the Commingled Recycling System in Northwest Washington. The group is now starting to work on recommendations from the report. Three workgroups are being established:  1) Educational Messaging; 2) Contracting Harmonization; and 3) Packaging Industry Collaboration. Statewide participants are welcome and needed.

o   For more information, contact Alli Kingfisher, 509-329-3448

  • Greening State Contracts with Environmentally Preferred Purchasing (EPP)

(Supports Goal RIMP 2, Action RIMP 2A on page 34 in the Reducing Impacts of Materials and Products section)

o   Ecology and the Department of Enterprise Services are joining forces to prioritize and green more state purchasing contracts.  Currently, they are focusing on state contracts for Facilities Maintenance and Repair supplies, Bulk, Frozen and Canned Food, Compostable Food Serviceware, and Janitorial Chemicals.

o   For more information, contact Tina Simcich, 360-407-7517

o   The Polychlorinated Biphenyls in Consumer Products report was published in November 2016.  This study examined 201 common consumer items, such as paints and packaging, to look for the presence of byproduct PCBs. The study included products purchased under Department of Enterprise Services contracts. According to state law (RCW 39.26.280 and RCW 39.26.290), the state has a preference for purchasing non-PCB containing items.

o   For more information, contact Kari Trumbull, 360-407-6093

o   A series of training videos on designating your waste are available on Ecology’s website.  An additional video on pharmaceuticals will be available in Spring 2017.  Many pharmaceuticals can be hazardous to people or the environment if they are thrown away or flushed down the drain.

o   For more information, contact Joanne Lind, 360-407-6474

  • Ecology is collaborating with University of Washington and others to provide training opportunities for identifying safer chemicals.
  • Transitioning to Safer Chemicals – in-person 1.5 day training (learn more)
  • List Translator: Introducing a Tool to Screen for Chemical Hazards – a 1.5 hour webinar to learn the basic principles of chemical hazard assessments, why they are of interest and simple tools to identify and screen out hazardous chemicals (learn more)
  • Using List Translators to Screen for Chemical Hazards– in person ¾ day training (learn more)
  • Additional topics and training sessions will be available in the future.
  • For more information, contact Saskia van Bergen, 360-407-6609.

Thank you for your interest in the State Solid and Hazardous Waste Plan,

–          Janine Bogar | Washington State Department of Ecology | Waste 2 Resources Program | 360-407-6654  |janine.bogar@ecy.wa.gov

and-          Chris Chapman | Washington State Department of Ecology |Hazardous Waste & Toxics Reduction Program  |360-407-7160  |chris.chapman@ecy.wa.gov

 

Ecology UPDATE: Solid Waste Handling Rules

Where we are
At the end of June we released preliminary draft language and invited comments. We held a series of day-long workshops to walk stakeholders through major changes and answer questions. We asked stakeholders to submit comments on the preliminary draft by early September.  We received some very good feedback that highlighted stakeholder concerns, and identified areas where the draft language could be improved. Based on that input, Waste 2 Resources Program staff are working to revise the draft rule.
 
Next steps
 We feel it is important to give stakeholders time to review the new language, ask additional questions, and submit further comments if needed.  Ecology is postponing the formal rule proposal until 2017. We will issue a revised preliminary draft to stakeholders in November, and ask for comments by the end of January 2017. We plan to evaluate those comments by spring 2017, and file a formal rule proposal by early summer.
 Revised schedule
·        November – Revised preliminary draft rule released (mid to late month)
·        January 31, 2017 – Comments due on revised draft due
·        June 2017 – Formal proposed rule filed – formal comment period begins
·        July 2017 – Public hearings and formal comment period closes
·        Fall 2017 – Rule adopted
The Solid Waste Handling Standards are important for Washington state. The rule sets standards for a wide range of activities, and affects major environmental and economic decisions in our state. Because of this, Ecology has worked with stakeholders to understand the strengths and shortcomings of the current rule, evaluate different approaches to improve the rule, and assess the impact of potential changes. Our goal is to develop a rule that is clearly written, reflects the feedback of stakeholders, and sets standards that will serve our state for years to come.
 How you can remain informed
 It is very important to subscribe to our Solid Waste Handling Standards ListServ if you are interested in this rulemaking.  It is the main way that we communicate with stakeholders on this rulemaking.  You can easily subscribe with just a name and email address at http://listserv.wa.gov/cgi-bin/wa?SUBED1=ECY-SW-HANDLING-STANDARDS&A=1.  Please let others know if you think they might be interested.
 
Our rulemaking web pages are periodically updated.  See what is happening with the solid waste rule, starting at http://www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/swfa/rules/wac173350/1308ov.html.
 
We thank you for your continued interest in this rulemaking and for your involvement as we work to improve the rule. 
  
Kyle Dorsey
Rules & Policy Coordinator
Waste 2 Resources Program
Washington State Department of Ecology
PO Box 47600
Olympia, WA  98504-7600
360-407-6559