Under the Federal Act of 1970, the United States Environmental Protection Agency or EPA has established the National Pollution Control Act (NPCA). The Act is a requirement to govern the way various hazardous substances and pollutants are disposed of. Apart from this, it also regulates the manufacturing of such substances and ensures their safe distribution.
The main purpose of this Act is to control and regulate all matters related to toxic substances and pollution. All U.S. industries and businesses are bound by the Act to control and handle toxic wastes and make sure they don’t pollute the environment. In fact, all persons who work in an office dealing with toxic materials and chemicals may be subject to a variety of federal and state laws regarding the handling and disposal of toxic chemicals and wastes. Apart from this, businesses engaged in processing, manufacturing, gathering, transporting, storing, etc., of hazardous substances are also liable for taking the necessary measures to control and prevent the pollution of toxic wastes and to prevent accidental spills.
EPA is the sole regulator for all matters related to environmental protection. Any person who manufactures, distributes, stores, handles, or places in a manner disposing of toxic chemicals or other toxic wastes is required by the Act to have EPA license. However, you need not get an EPA license for simply disposing of toxic materials. You may be exempted from getting an EPA license if your activity is defined as a “use by the public” rather than “misuse by a single entity.”
The primary objectives of the Act are to control and protect the public from the adverse effects of hazardous substances. It aims to provide for reasonable protection against unreasonable hazards. EPA defines reasonable for it as a standard, which can be justified in terms of the impact on public safety, health, and the environment. It also aims to provide for protection against unreasonable risk.
All industries and businesses are required to ensure proper disposal of wastes, and EPA has formulated numerous rules and regulations to implement its objectives. These include the implementation of closed systems for hazardous materials handling. These systems should include a facility for temporary storage, transportation, and safekeeping of hazardous substances. Containers or totes should be used to contain dangerous and toxic wastes. If no container or bag is available, EPA strongly recommends the use of dedicated waste containers.
It is required that industries dispose of hazardous substances in a way that minimizes the hazard they cause. EPA specifies various requirements for hazardous substances, including the frequency of reporting, and the type of response that need to be made when such substances are found. The specified frequency of reporting can range from once per year to several hundred times per year. And the type of response that needs to be made when harmful substances are found ranges from a visual assessment to the provision of a temporary storage facility. The safest approach to safe handling is to comply with all recommendations made by EPA.
EPA has set standards for the segregation, transportation, and storage of hazardous wastes. Separation requirements include those that regulate the sources of the wastes, the transport, and the disposal of the wastes. EPA proposes to harmonize the existing regulations concerning the transportation, storage, and handling of toxic wastes. And it seeks to make the existing regulations uniform for the states as well. EPA proposes to reduce the potential for global adverse health and environmental effects caused by hazardous wastes, by: increasing information management regarding the hazardous waste; requiring compliance testing for companies that manage hazardous waste materials and by requiring companies to provide protection against the adverse effects of no-specific-subject matters.
Disposal of UFA is limited to the extent that it poses no harm to others. There are no controls over the disposal of radioactive compounds, nuclear waste, or fission product waste. For these wastes, there are special facilities where they are safely disposed. In cases where waste poses a danger to public safety or the environment, EPA directs state agencies to take action. When waste poses a threat, EPA considers the best interests of the public to be served.