West Virginia Adopts Aerosols as Universal Waste Rule

used spray paint cans

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized regulations (“Increasing Recycling: Adding Aerosol Cans to the Universal Waste Regulations”) on Nov. 15, 2019, and published them in the Federal Register on Dec. 9, 2019. These regulations allow for the management of hazardous aerosol can wastes under the universal waste portion of the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) hazardous waste rules (40 CFR 273).    

The Aerosols as Universal Waste Rule became effective on Feb. 7, 2020, in non-authorized states and must be adopted in authorized states.

Clean Earth is tracking the rulemaking process for the states to show when the rule is effective, as well as the interim steps such as draft regulations and public comment periods. 

West Virginia is the latest state to adopt the final rule, which goes into effect on July 1, 2021. We are excited that West Virginia has adopted the rule because Clean Earth’s aerosol recycling plant is located in Morgantown, West Virginia and brings even more opportunity for us to manage aerosols as Universal Waste through the facility. Clean Earth's hazardous waste facility in Morgantown, West Virginia, is a Part B permitted TSDF, capable of receiving a large variety of hazardous and non-hazardous wastes in drums, totes and bulk. Our treatment, disposal and recycling process combine leading edge concepts with proven technology to provide reuse and recycling options without higher costs. Capabilities include the processing and recycling of aerosol cans, paints, and traditional consumer household products, in metal, plastic and even glass containers. With the ability to batch process and isolate equipment systems, we can process waste and non-waste materials based on customer needs. Learn more here.

Anticipated rulemaking before July 1, 2021

  • South Carolina: The rule is currently in legislative review (document 4975). Upon approval/publication, the final rule is expected to go into effect on May 28, 2021, or June 25, 2021.

Anticipated rulemaking after July 1, 2021

  • Louisiana: The rule is currently in internal discussions, and public hearing, comment and meeting notices will occur in fall 2022. The final rule is expected to be effective in early 2023.
  • Mississippi: Currently drafting the rule (adopting by reference) with the final rule expected to go into effect in fall 2021. In summer 2021, regulations are being written/working on notice.
  • Missouri: Stakeholder meetings held on May 13, 2021, with public comment in summer 2021. Proposed rule expected to publish in summer 2021.
  • Montana: The rule is currently in internal discussions with intent to adopt by reference. The final rule is expected to go into effect in late spring 2022.
  • New Hampshire: Currently drafting the rule with the final rule expected to go into effect in summer 2021. Public hearing and comment in June 2021.
  • New York: Currently drafting the rule (Federal Register 6), and written comments will be accepted until further notice. Formal public comment period in spring 2021 with final rule expected to go into effect in 2022.
  • Vermont: Currently drafting the rule with the final rule expected to go into effect in summer 2021. Public hearing and comment in spring 2021.

Similar rule already in effect

  • Minnesota: The rule is currently in effect, but a rule is being drafted to add it to a previously proposed rulemaking: Land-Related Housekeeping Amendments. Public hearing and comment will be in September 2021 with the amended final rule expected to take effect in 2022.
  • Utah: The rule is currently under evaluation. A similar state law is already in effect, and any amendments will closely mirror the federal rule. Public hearing and comment will be in summer 2021 with the final rule expected to go into effect in fall 2021.

Clean Earth is one of the largest specialty waste companies in the United States, providing remediation, disposal, recycling and beneficial reuse solutions for contaminated soil, dredged material and hazardous and non-hazardous waste. Our vast portfolio of technologies and services touches nearly every industry that generates waste including energy, infrastructure, commercial, industrial, retail and healthcare.

Contact us today to start your recycling and disposal solution.


Screen Shot 2021-05-24 at 12.05.22 PM.png

Take the next step
To create a better future for our people, partners, and planet