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RCRA: Resource Conservation and Recovery Act


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The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) of 1976 gave the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the authority to control hazardous waste from "cradle-to-grave." This includes the generation, transportation, treatment, storage, and disposal of hazardous waste. RCRA also set forth a framework for the management of non-hazardous wastes.

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1986 amendments to RCRA enabled EPA to address environmental problems that could result from underground tanks storing petroleum and other hazardous substances. RCRA focuses only on active and future facilities and does not address abandoned or historical sites (see CERCLA).

In 1984, the Hazardous and Solid Waste Amendments (HSWA) were added to RCRA that required phasing out land disposal of hazardous waste. Some of the other mandates of this strict law include increased enforcement authority for EPA, more stringent hazardous waste management standards, and a comprehensive underground storage tank program.

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Some of the information required by RCRA is the same information that is found in a Safety Data Sheet. After all, a hazardous waste is generated after one uses a hazardous chemical. Therefore, one will sometimes find certain RCRA, TSCA and SDS information in the same sources.

Further Reading


Additional definitions from Google and OneLook.

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