Natural disasters like tornadoes, hurricanes, typhoons, and floods come with a lot of collateral damage which affects homes and infrastructure. They also affect our businesses, which are sources of livelihood for many.
Imagine building your enterprise from the ground up, only for it to be dissipated in hours or seconds by the freaks of nature! So how can you prepare your business to weather the storm in the face of a sudden natural disaster? Here’s my ‘Hitchhiker’s guide’ to business disaster preparedness.
1. Safety Protocols
All lives matter, human resource is the backbone of any business. So having Standard Operating-Procedures(S0Ps) for disaster preparedness can mitigate any occupational risks during such times.
Simulating disaster drills can also go a long way in disaster preparedness if employees know emergency exits and evacuation protocols. Keeping a well-equipped disaster kit is commended too, and it should come complete with survival supplies for at least 3 days.
2. Data Backup
Yes backups are quite the norm now. But having a ‘backup’ of your backup is advisable. Having an extra digital location where your most sensitive documents, emails as well as digital records and databases are stored.
This can allow you to switch to a ‘virtual business’ till the dust settles and enable you to work and deliver remotely. It gives your business a much needed lifeline as virtual records can help in the rebuilding process a lot. Be sure that your backups are done frequently and can be automated.
3. Insurance Cover
Get yourself flood insurance if your geographic code is prone to weather disasters. The average flood insurance policy costs about $800 and most Insurance companies now offer business interruption policies, property as well as disaster packages at good premiums.
Statistics show that 2 in 5 businesses open after natural disaster. So, to help alleviate the hustles of reopening, insurance could come in handy. I’d advise you take time to meet your insurance agent to ponder over business insurance covers.
4. Infrastructure Precautions
Considering the barrage of destruction Hurricane Harvey brought on the Texas Gulf-Coast causing property damage of up to $80bn, certain measures and precautions can’t be ignored. This is especially so when it comes to the resilience and structural safety of your work premise. Be sure to do a structural audit on your location and assess any possibilities of vulnerability.
Do take time to verify that your business location meets specified building codes. Also surely endeavor to test and service the premise emergency generator under load. If weather disaster strikes, do make an effort to use protective material such as plywood to seal off windows. You can also secure first floor doorways with sandbags while relocating your most sensitive office equipment to innermost portions of the building.
5. Emergency Savings
An Indian friend told me once “In India we save for a rainy day, because it basically rains every day”. That could explain why many Asians are good at saving because they understand that nature can’t be negotiated with.
As a rule of thumb, it’s advisable for businesses to save 20% of their profit per month into an ‘Emergency Trust’. On top of the insurance monies or low interest loans from the Office of Disaster-Assistance, this money can reduce the burden of loss of assets on your business.
The future is green, and it’s more important to get on board with it than ever before. The past year has seen countless climate change related natural disasters, from the recent devastating mega-fires in California to frequent hurricanes sweeping the US and the Caribbean.
Solar panels are becoming much more accessible, for homeowners and for businesses. Traditional roof-rack solar panels can now be installed for as little as around $3,000, and are practically a no-brainer due to the energy savings you’ll make over time (you could even totally eliminate your electricity bill). Not to mention that you’ll be doing your part to help the environment in our planet’s time of need.
Solar panels are becoming more accessible, for homeowners and businesses
If you’ve always found chunky solar panels ugly and off-putting, business magnate Elon Musk has a solution. His electric car and solar panel company Tesla has recently unveiled invisible solar roof tiles. The tiles look exactly like normal roof slates, but capture the sun’s energy without drawing attention. These tiles are paving the way to normalizing sustainable, beautiful eco-homes.
After the initial investment of purchasing the panels and installation, the energy produced is all yours. Even if you consume more energy than your panels can produce, you’ll make drastic savings on what you are currently paying by purchasing all your electricity from the grid.
You’ll make even more amazing savings if you live in a sunny state or country – prices in Brisbane, Australia, are particularly low to purchase and install solar panels. And as the city enjoys on average 261 days of sun per year, panels there will produce more than enough energy to power homes all year round.
If you are open to the possibility of moving to a new house in the future, you will be able to sell your current property at an increased value by equipping it with solar panels. It’s an attractive prospect for buyers if a potential home comes with very small or no electricity bills, so you’ll be making a huge return on your investment in this way, too.
Note: Be wary of ‘renting your roof’ to solar panel companies if you can’t afford to purchase the panels outright. You may want to ‘go green’ in any way you can, but buying panels is by far the most practical way to enjoy the benefits. The lengthy leases that come with rental panel contracts (often 25 years) have been seen to put off mortgage lenders.
It’s highly recommended that if you want to benefit from free electricity and help the environment with solar, you should save up first to increase the value of your property – not render it unsellable.
Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
As we said, it’s never been so important to do your bit to save our eco-system. The polar ice caps are melting faster than has ever been recorded, and the earth is suffering terrible effects. As well as hurricanes and fires, we’ve also experienced floods, earthquakes and landslides all over the world this year.
In the large scheme of things, installing solar panels doesn’t seem like it will help much, but if everyone did their part to be more eco-conscious, we could significantly reduce the strain of destructive fossil fuels on the environment. By equipping your property with solar panels, you will save money while making steps to saving the environment – a tough offer to turn down!
Utilizing green energy within your business has even better rewards. Marketing your business as eco-conscious and sustainable is a great way to attract customers and impress existing ones. In recent years, studies into consumer activity have found that sustainability is a big shopping priority, especially among the millennial generation. Corporate solar panels will increase your revenue by expanding your customer base AND saving your business’s energy bills.
So – what are you waiting for? Contact a solar energy company today, who will be more than happy to assist you on your green energy journey.
Recently there has been a lot of talk in how a country can improve their ecological footstep. One way of doing so is definitely changing the way the respective country produces its energy. Australia has recently been headlining the news in regard to the renewable energy situation. Australia’s energy production is looking towards a new future with a specific aim on solar and wind power.
If Australia plans on keeping its water resource at a steady level, it has got to go from its use of coal to renewable sources. Thanks to its abundance in both solar and wind energy, Australia has quite the advantage when it comes to green energy production possibilities.
Unfortunately though due to their geographic position, the water supply is limited for the country. So much so, that the coal industry was taking a toll on the water supply due to the large quantities of water needed when producing energy from coal. As a result, moving over to wind and solar energy fueled productions is a viable option seeing how both respective energy productions do not require water.
The news that Australia was listed as a “water-stressed company” was released by the World Resource Institute; a non-profit organization based in Washington D.C. Moreover, on this past May 13th The Sydney Morning Herald also wrote that 73% of Australia’s electricity needs were met by the use of coal. In respect to these findings and Australia’s continuous growth, it is imperative that new resources are used for energy production.
Australia has been making headlines in renewable energy sector.
Fortunately, Australia’s geography is a big resource as well when it comes to studying the possibilities of implementing the new energy production. It was in fact calculated that the dimensions of the solar power farm needed to meet the country’s demands would result in occupying only 0.1% of Australia’s total land mass; I think we can all agree on the fact that that land could be spared for a solar farm.
And on that note, the government is taking the matter seriously, and has called upon everybody to try and better the situation. The incentives call upon small businesses and households as well by reminding them that there are the possibilities of installing their own solar panels, heat pumps, solar water heaters, and more.
Thanks to the various incentives, the Green Energy Council has stated that there is a lot of activity in the sector, including at least 58 different projects focused on implementing the renewable energy sources. As a consequence of these projects, the council has also stated that there would be an income of $10 billion in investments, 6,141 new jobs, and 5,482 megawatts of renewable energy capacity. Definitely great numbers to look forward to!
Just 6% of businesses consider their maintenance department to be well established, showing just how little attention companies are paying to this area. No employee likes trash piling up in the bins around the office. The only solution to this problem is to help arrange a Roll Off Dumpster Berks County that can be placed under the company building and emptied on specific days of the week. This can get your business to be more organized just by making waste removal services more accessible.
As a result, wastage is often high, which eats into profit margins. When an office is refurbished, there will inevitably be some waste created, which the company must pay for. In order to mitigate the damage, business managers should put more attention into their maintenance strategy, acting preventatively rather than reactively. This way, business maintenance waste will be limited. The resulting maintenance waste can then be converted into energy, thus becoming a money maker rather than a drain on resources.
Benefits of Sustainability for Business
Sustainability is really a no-brainer from a business perspective, yet many companies are failing to hit a sustainable level of waste management. US consumers are beginning to care more about a business’s environmental impact over the price of their products, with 67% supporting an end to single-use plastic straws. Not only will restructuring your waste strategy save you money on cleanup, but it will improve the image of your company. In these eco-conscious times, this is essential.
Furthermore, a recent poll by Michigan State University found that 88% of Americans take steps to reduce their food wastage. This shows how high a priority this is for the average customer. If you can target more resources towards sustainable waste management, then you are bound to see increased profits in other areas.
Scheduling and Planning
Cutting waste is all about taking preventative actions rather than reacting to circumstances as they arise. By planning your maintenance ahead of time, it is possible to identify areas where wastage will occur and take steps to avoid this. Work with the most experienced maintenance waste managers for the best results. You are probably already a top planner when it comes to marketing and sales, but are you using these skills when maintenance work needs carrying out?
Before any big construction or renovation project, have an expert identify the quantity of waste that will be produced. You will then be able to schedule in workers to come and remove it immediately, increasing efficiency and lowering costs. It is then up to you to dispose of this waste in a way which is responsible.
Profit From Your Waste
The average business uses between 15,000 and 25,000 kWh per year. This energy has to come from somewhere. Given the amount of waste produced by a typical company, why not put this back into your operation by converting it to energy or transforming it into useful products? This is a win-win situation. You get to carry out the necessary maintenance to keep your business running, while receiving free energy to power your company and promoting an eco-friendly brand image.
Maintenance is an important part of every business, but many managers neglect the cost of waste. Staying on top of your business maintenance waste is guaranteed to cut costs and boost profits. Have a waste management schedule in place and use the trash to provide a sustainable energy source as well as useful products.
The majority of properties globally waste water, and commercial properties are no different. According to EPA statistics, a single toilet can leak a gallon of water every two minutes; an unattended hose, 20 gallons every two minutes. This is a huge amount of water when you multiply that by the hundreds of thousands of businesses in every country around the world. For businesses, there is a moral and ethical imperative to save water – everyone needs to get involved in tackling climate change. However, there’s a business case to be made, too, starting with your bottom line.
Maximizing profits, minimizing waste
The impact of decreasing water levels and the rise of droughts is already having a serious impact on businesses. According to ABC, rising costs are inevitable, and that includes in traditionally water-rich areas such as Illinois, USA. Water can be lost through faulty plumbing, but also through business groundwork and premises. Too many non-water-retaining surfaces, such as asphalt, concrete and imitation lawns, can lead to water runoff, giving no benefit to the business and creating losses.
There is a clear business case for trying to trap this water. Studies have shown that huge savings can be made by installing infrastructure and policies that seek to retain water. Going in at the base level is a great place to start in generating real long-term savings.
Fighting water loss will also help to combat climate change, an area in which there is already untold damage being done to businesses. According to CNBC, the accumulated damage caused by climate change will cost businesses $2 trillion by the end of the century – every single year. This is a 7.1% loss in revenue in the USA alone. Businesses in less well protected areas of the world, especially around the equator, can stand to lose even more in the short term.
A proper climate change action policy is essential in getting involved in the fight against this, and that includes retaining as much water as possible – in the USA, and further afield, drought is already a major problem.
A sustainable generation
When it comes to business reputation, savvy owners know that it’s the opinion of their customers that really matters. The customer’s need trump everything else, and there’s a lot of evidence to back up just how much the customer really cares about the impact on the environment of the business they are purchasing from.
According to Forbes, 58% of consumers – all consumers, not just the typically more progressively-minded youth – will now pay more for products that come from companies with considerable green credentials. This is a massive opportunity for businesses to get ahead of competition and cement a long-term name in the industry.
As you can see, water saving policies aren’t only common sense – they’re a real action to take in the fight against climate change, and improving company profits. A business stands to benefit to a large degree from embracing pro-green policies.
While using alternative sources of energy is a right way for you to save money on your heating and cooling bills, it also allows you to contribute in vital ways to both the environment and the economy. Renewable energy sources are renewable, environmentally sustainable sources that do not create any by-products that are released into the atmosphere like coal and fossil fuels do.
Burning coal to produce electricity releases particulates and substances such as mercury, arsenic, sulfur and carbon monoxide into the air, all of which can cause health problems in humans.
Other by-products from burning coal are acid rain, sludge run-off and heated water that is released back into the rivers and lakes nearby the coal-fired plants. While efforts are being made to create “clean coal,” businesses have been reluctant to use the technology due to the high costs associated with changing their plants.
If you are considering taking the plunge and switching to a renewable energy source to save money on your electric and heating bills or to help the environment, you have a lot of decisions to make. The first decision you need to make is which energy source to use in your home or business. Do you want to switch to solar energy, wind power, biomass energy or geothermal energy?
Emissions from homes using heating oil, vehicles, and electricity produced from fossil fuels also pollute the air and contribute to the number of greenhouse gases that are in the atmosphere and depleting the ozone layer. Carbon dioxide is one of the gases that is released into the air by the burning of fossil fuels to create energy and in the use of motor vehicles. Neither coal nor fossil fuels are sources of renewable energy.
Replacing those energy sources with solar, biomass, geothermal or wind-powered generators will allow homes and businesses to have an adequate source of energy always at hand. While converting to these systems can sometimes be expensive, the costs are quickly coming down, and they pay for themselves in just a few short years because they supply energy that is virtually free. In some cases, the excess energy they create can be bought from the business or the homeowner.
While there are more than these three alternative energy options, these are the easiest to implement on an individual basis. Other sources of alternative energy, for instance, nuclear power, hydroelectric power, and natural gas require a primary power source for the heat so it can be fed to your home or business. Solar, wind, biomass and geothermal energy can all have power sources in your home or business to supply your needs.
1. Solar Energy
Solar power is probably the most widely used source of these options. While it can be expensive to convert your home or business over to solar energy, or to an alternative energy source for that matter, it is probably the most natural source to turn over to.
You can use the sun’s energy to power your home or business and heat water. It can be used to passively heat or light up your rooms as well just by opening up your shades.
2. Wind Power
You need your wind turbine to power your home or office, but wind energy has been used for centuries to pump water or for commercial purposes, like grinding grain into flour. While many countries have wind farms to produce energy on a full-scale basis, you can have your wind turbine at home or at your business to provide electricity for your purposes.
The cost of alternative energy systems has dropped sharply in recent years
3. Biomass Energy
Biomass energy has rapidly become a vital part of the global renewable energy mix and account for an ever-growing share of electric capacity added worldwide. Biomass is the material derived from plants that use sunlight to grow which include plant and animal material such as wood from forests, material left over from agricultural and forestry processes, and organic industrial, human and animal wastes.
Biomass comes from a variety of sources which include wood from natural forests and woodlands, agricultural residues, agro-industrial wastes, animal wastes, industrial wastewater, municipal sewage and municipal solid wastes.
4. Geothermal Energy
A geothermal heat pump helps cool or heat your home or office using the earth’s heat to provide the power needed to heat the liquid that is run through the system to either heat your home in the winter or cool it off in the summer. While many people use it, it doesn’t provide electricity, so you still need an energy source for that.
There are many reasons to adopt sustainability as your main guiding policy in conducting business. With environmental problems becoming more prevalent worldwide, consumers seem to show a strong preference for businesses that adhere to environmental ethics. A sustainable business strategy can thus give you an edge over competitors. But business sustainability is tightly connected to waste management because any business activity generates waste that can harm the environment.
Whether you deliver products or services, analyze your business practices and determine what activities produce the largest amounts of waste. Most importantly, determine whether these waste-generating activities can be avoided or reduced. For example, paper consumption in offices is often wasteful and can be easily reduced by avoiding unnecessary printing and copying and working predominantly with electronic files.
So, identify all wasteful activities in your company. Then implement a series of rules to avoid these activities or reduce their recurrence. Much better than implementing a sustainable waste management system is not to generate waste at all.
Reuse, Recycle or Donate
Pay attention to the waste generated in your company and determine which items or components can be reused, recycled, or donated. In many cases, what you consider waste can find an application elsewhere. Good waste management involves foremost an assessment of whether an item has lost all functional and practical purposes or is fit for other uses inside your company or elsewhere.
Always consider reusing items that haven’t lost their properties or features. Instruct employees to recycle. Add bins in the office for materials such as paper, cardboard, plastic, glass, or aluminum. Never send electronics, office equipment, furniture, or tools to the landfill. Either send them to a recycling facility or donate them to a charity.
To maintain a clean, healthy, and safe environment for your employees and customers, create a disposal plan for each type of waste. Ideally, only biodegradable waste should go to the landfill.
Although a business can find it difficult not to generate waste, it’s important to develop a waste management system that takes into consideration environmental concerns. Businesses need raw materials, supplies, tools, electronics, and various equipment to function properly. They also need energy, electricity, and water. And because businesses consume so many tangible and intangible resources, governments and customers expect them to show a sense of responsibility for the environment.
By adopting a sustainable waste management system, you demonstrate an ethical, future-oriented business approach. Perform a waste audit and use the tips above to set waste-minimization goals for your business.
Businesses are a leading source of waste, hence the need for management. While waste management on a large scale is still a challenge, businesses can come up with effective management, such as hiring a dumpster. You do not necessarily need a permanent dumpster as a business, but having one is vital to properly managing your waste. A dumpster will significantly benefit your business, whether a cleaning company, restaurant, or office.
A commercial dumpster rental will help create a safe job site, especially if you deal with sharp and hazardous products. You can designate special dumpsters for different kinds of waste to reduce accidents at the workplace. A clean and safe workplace also promotes peace of mind among your employees, improving their performance.
2. Commercial Dumpster Rentals Are Eco Friendly
As a business owner, you should meet the local, federal, state, or international standards to reduce the greenhouse effect. Adding a waste management policy helps you compact your trash for recycling. This way, a small percentage of your waste will find its way into the landfill sites and water bodies, saving the environment in the long run.
3. Create More Space
Compacting your waste saves on space as it reduces the once bulky items. You can, in turn, utilize the extra space in your business for more facilities for optimal performance.
4. Legal Waste Management
Unfortunately, many businesses are unaware that they are illegally throwing trash, which could get them into trouble. Using a commercial dumpster rental service provides your business with a legal waste management option. The company will take responsibility for the waste management and all its regulations, saving you the worry.
5. Reduce Operational Costs
Failure to manage your waste could result in workplace injuries in which the affected party sues the organization resulting in hefty compensations. Also, while you may have other disposal mechanisms, they could violate the rules of your locality, which may attract fines. Therefore, investing in a commercial dumpster rental is ideal for reducing such costs.
Get a Commercial Dumpster for Your Business
A waste management system is necessary for any business. This system keeps the business clean, ensures a safe work environment, cuts operational costs, and preserves the environment. Hence, if you are yet to implement such a system, consider linking up with a reputable company, most of which will also set a recycling program for your business.
According to a recent Nielsen study, 81 percent of consumers feel strongly that businesses should be taking measures to reduce their impact on the environment. This passion is shared across generations, and it’s safe to say that businesses that have little regard for their corporate social responsibility are significantly less desirable to consumers.
Despite this, a 2018 survey by Carbon Credentials found that only 10 percent of UK businesses had strategies in place to cut carbon emissions. Of those that did, none had a set science-based target in their carbon reduction plan. We know that climate change will devastate the economy and drastically increase the cost of doing business. That’s not even mentioning how it will impact resource scarcity and the global population as a whole.
Naturally, your expenses go down with your resource usage. From using more efficient equipment to streamlining your transportation operations to recycling office supplies, there are countless measures every business can take to make this happen. Within the first month, you’ll have more money to allocate towards growth – instead of utility bills.
Regulatory and Tax Compliance
Year-on-year, laws are passed to penalise businesses that don’t make an effort to reduce their impact on the environment and reward those that do. In the UK, this includes the Climate Change Levy, the EU Emissions Trading System and capital allowances on energy-efficient equipment, among other schemes.
A 2015 Nielsen study of 30,000 consumers found that 66 percent of them would pay more for sustainably manufactured products. Among millennials, that portion increases to 77 percent. Gen Z is known to be even more conscious in this regard. The more your business cares, the more your customers will care about your business.
In a similar light, going green fosters positive feelings from your employees as well. This has many benefits. For one, your staff will be more productive and motivated to achieve if they know they’re working for a good cause. Additionally, turnover will be reduced as employees will be less compelled to leave a work community that cares.
The Bigger Picture
This should go without saying, but reducing your company’s environmental impact has lasting benefits for your community and the economy as a whole. The likelihood of your long-term success and prosperity is far greater if the environment is in better shape.
Implementing greener practises is extremely beneficial to your business and more often than not, it is a dead-simple process. Getting started today will help you reap the benefits and reach your business goals sooner.
In 2019, the EPA levied fines totaling $170,000 against three Southern California-based companies, namely, Coat Product, Inc., International Aerospace Coatings, Inc., and Goodwest Rubber Linings, Inc. These companies allegedly violated the federal Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA) that oversees the proper management of hazardous waste.
Hazardous waste regulations compliance is complex, and businesses of all sizes find them significantly stringent to follow and comply with. If found guilty, the organizations are liable to pay huge fines that can financially wipe out small and mid-size organizations. This article can help businesses stay proactive about preventing hazardous waste violations.
Types of Hazardous Waste
Hazardous waste is any solid waste that is listed as a known hazardous waste or exhibits any characteristic among ignitability, corrosivity, reactivity, or toxicity. A known hazardous waste is categorized into four lists named F, K, P, and U lists.
The hazardous waste regulations differ based on the quantity of waste generated by your business.
Large Quantity Generators – Businesses that monthly generate more than 1000 kg of hazardous waste or more than 100 kg of acute spill residue or soil, or more than 1 kg of acute hazardous waste.
Small Quantity Generators – Businesses that monthly generate hazardous waste between 100 kg and 1000 kg.
Very Small Quantity Generators – Businesses that monthly generate up to 100 kg of hazardous waste, or up to 100 kg of acute spill residue or soil, or up to 1 kg of acute hazardous waste.
After knowing your class of hazardous waste generators, let’s understand some of the common hazardous waste violations.
Common Hazardous Waste Violations
1. Lack of Proper Labelling
Proper labeling is critical for notifying government waste haulers, safety personnel, and your employees regarding the accumulated chemical, specifically in the event of an emergency and how long it has been accumulating onsite.
2. Improper Disposal
Businesses dispose of hazardous waste by illegally dumping it due to various reasons, including lack of time and efforts, avoid disposal fees, lack of knowledge about what constitutes hazardous waste, or understaffed or untrained workforce with lack of waste management procedures knowledge.
3. Improper or No Determination of the Waste
Many times, the generators fail to properly determine the waste by testing it or knowing its stream that can attract hefty fines.
4. Improper Management of Expired Waste
Expired chemicals can be extremely volatile and considered hazardous waste. These materials can be dangerous as they are no longer in their original containers and can become less stable or have decomposed due to aging. They are subject to hazardous waste generator requirements as well as the regulatory timeframes in which they can be disposed of or stored.
5. No or Inadequate Waste Manifests
Adequate paperwork is also critical when it comes to hazardous waste. After storing and labeling hazardous waste, you, as a generator, are mandated to complete the Hazardous Waste Manifest that outlines the type and quality of waste. Further, you need to mail its copy to the appropriate regulatory agencies such as EPA and DOT (Department of Transportation).
6. No or Inadequate Training for Employees
Inadequate employee training can lead to improper hazardous waste handling procedures that might result in treacherous spills, toxic chemical reactions, and spreading fire. Also, failing to wear protective gear can expose your employees to radioactive materials, fumes, and other hidden risks that can cost their lives. Not following proper updated standards for employee communication and training can result in hefty fines.
7. Lack of Contingency Plan
A generator should have a written Hazardous Waste Contingency Plan that can be implemented immediately during an emergency, including explosions, fires, and sudden unplanned release of hazardous waste. It’s designed to minimize hazards to the environment and human health during emergencies. Failing to have a contingency plan can result in significant fines.
8. Improper Management of Mercury
Mercury and its products are incredibly toxic and can cause chronic and acute poisoning and severe illness if mishandled. Improper management of mercury attracts hefty fines as it can lead to spills and evaporation, risking human lives and the environment.
9. Open Containers
Not closing the containers containing hazardous waste is among the common violations and can be a cause of accidents and physical injuries that can be avoided with a few precautions.
10. No or Infrequent Weekly Inspections
All hazardous waste generators are compelled to perform a weekly inspection of their hazardous waste container storage areas. It’s also a common violation that can be easily avoided by the implementation of standard procedures and compliance maintenance.
How to Prevent Hazardous Waste Violations
Hazardous waste violations and the associated hefty fines can be avoided by implementing standard procedures and giving due diligence during generating, storing, transporting, and disposing of hazardous waste.
Follow rigorous labeling of containers with hazardous waste including name and address of your facility, accumulation start date, source or identity of waste, characteristic of waste, mentioning what makes it hazardous, and physical state of the waste.
Keep in mind proper licensing and know your waste generator requirements.
Understand the “cradle to grave” requirements by RCRA.
Comply with hazardous waste management training requirements by providing on-the-job as well as classroom training to your employees on hazardous waste management, storage, and disposal procedures.
Contract with a reputed and properly licensed hazardous waste company that will provide proof of proper disposal along with adequate documentation. Closed top mini frac tanks can be ideal for hazardous waste disposal as they ensure safe transportation of chemicals and other volatile substances.
Properly determine your waste streams with the Hazardous Waste Identification process.
Check if it is solid waste.
Check if it’s particularly excluded from RCRA.
Check if it’s listed as hazardous waste.
Check if it exhibits hazardous waste characteristics.
Conduct regular audits. Keep track of expired chemicals to dispose of them properly. Have a centralized purchasing and inventory process for effective organization and inventory management of chemicals.
Fill out and double-check the Uniform Hazardous Waste Manifest correctly.
Create an adequate contingency plan based on your company’s waste generator status. The plan should include contact information of emergency coordinator, emergency equipment location, emergency phone numbers, and more.
Conduct regular audits and weekly inspections of the storage area and containers and keep them closed at all times. Maintain a log record. Ensure that the storage area is free from debris and other materials, container tops are free from spillage, containers are in good condition and free from spills and leaks, and the ground is clean and dry. Make sure that the waste is stored in compatible containers.
Clean Air Act (CAA) – Its goal is to enhance and protect the country’s air quality.
Clean Water Act (CWA) – It intends to prevent, reduce, and eliminate pollution in groundwater and navigable waters.
Toxic Substance Control Act (TCSA) – It aims to protect human health and the environment from potentially hazardous chemicals by restricting their manufacture, processing, and use.
Hazardous waste violations are taken extremely seriously, and the associated fines can spell financial doom for small and mid-sized companies. However, well-thought procedures, a disciplined, proactive approach, and routine inspections can help you stay compliant.
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