Changes to Hazardous Waste Movement
The federal government is proposing to consolidate and streamline the Export and Import Regulations, the Interprovincial Movement Regulations, and PCB Waste Export Regulations.
The Proposed Cross-border Movement of Hazardous Waste and Hazardous Recyclable Material Regulations (“Regulations”) was published on December 15, 2018 in the Canada Gazette. The goal of the proposed Regulations is to provide flexibility for the electronic movement tracking system by no longer prescribing the specific form required for tracking shipments of hazardous waste and hazardous recyclable material. The use of an electronically generated movement document allows information to be passed easily without the requirement of physical copies to be handed from one party to another.
Some of the proposed changes include:
- Implementation of an electronic tracking system;
- References to the toxicity characteristic leaching procedure (TCLP) in its entirety;
- Removal of small quantity exclusions for hazardous waste and hazardous recyclable material containing mercury;
- Clarification of the types of batteries included in the definitions of hazardous waste and hazardous recyclable material;
- Excluding waste or recyclable material generated from the normal operations of a ship; and,
- Designating “circuit boards and display devices and any equipment that contains them” as hazardous waste or hazardous recyclable material.
Batteries are not currently listed as hazardous under the Export and Import Regulations but do regularly meet other criteria and are captured under the definitions of hazardous waste or hazardous recyclable material. This means that currently some types of batteries are covered by the definitions while for others it is unclear. The proposed Regulations plans to capture all types of batteries (i.e. rechargeable and non-rechargeable) that are being shipped internationally or interprovincially for disposal or recycling in the definitions of hazardous waste and/or hazardous recyclable material.
The Regulations also propose removing the partial prohibition on the export of waste containing PCBs in concentrations equal to, or greater than, 50 mg/kg. The duration of permits is also proposed to be increased from 12 months to 3 years allowing for the movement of hazardous recyclable materials directly to pre-consented facilities within OECD countries.
The public comment period for the proposed Regulations is open until February 13, 2019.
 The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is an intergovernmental economic organization with 36 member countries, founded in 1961 to stimulate economic progress and world trade. It is a group of countries that are committed to democracy and the market economy and among other things identify good practices and coordinate domestic and international policies.