4 The record articles

California – Are you Prepared for New Hazardous Waste Generator Rules?

Posted: April 12th, 2023

Authors: Meredith G. 

If you are in California, you may not have noticed changes in federal hazardous waste regulations because the California Department of Toxic Substances (DTSC) has not yet adopted the provisions of the 2016 Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Rule (GIR). However, this year DTSC decided to stop wasting time (pun intended).

In 2016, the United States Environmental Protection Agency adopted the GIR. The GIR resulted in over sixty changes in provisions to the hazardous waste regulations. The purpose of the GIR was fivefold:

  1. Strengthen environmental protections.
  2. Provide greater flexibility to generators.
  3. Provide a better understanding of the regulations.
  4. Reorganize hazardous waste regulations.
  5. Make corrections to existing regulations.


On March 24, 2023, DTSC released proposed changes to California’s hazardous waste regulations to adopt the GIR provisions. The intent of this rulemaking package is to update state regulations that are less stringent than federal regulations to be at least as stringent as federal regulations. Public comments on the proposed changes close May 8, 2023. DTSC’s proposed regulations are expected to take effect in 2023 but the GIR provisions are not in effect in California until DTSC adopts them. If the provisions proposed on March 24th are adopted, DTSC anticipates that 94,000 businesses will be impacted, including both large quantity generators (LQG) and small quantity generators (SQG).

What are DTSC’s proposed changes?

The following table summarizes key new requirements that have been proposed and which types of generators may be impacted.

The new requirements will be more stringent than existing state regulations and are mandatory under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). Additionally, DTSC is proposing to reorganize the California hazardous waste generator regulations to align with the organization of the federal regulations. For example, existing regulations in 22 CCR 66262.34 related to satellite accumulation areas would be relocated to 22 CCR 66262.15.

How can you participate?

Submit your written comments to DTSC via email to regs@dtsc.ca.gov or submit hard-copy comments to the following address:

Office of Legislation and Regulatory Review
Department of Toxic Substances Control
P.O. Box 806
Sacramento, California 95812-0806

This rulemaking is the first of two planned rulemaking packages. Be on the lookout for a second proposed rulemaking package from DTSC with less stringent GIR requirements that may create more flexibility for hazardous waste generators in California.

Do you want to learn more about how these proposed changes might impact compliance at your site? Reach out to Meredith Garrett at mgarrett@all4inc.com or 909.477.7132. ALL4 will keep you up to date on the GIR proposed rules and can partner with you to keep your hazardous waste program in compliance.



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