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Waste Designation Decision Matrix - Toxic Wastes

This is the waste designation decision matrix provided by the Small Business and Local Government Assistance Program to aid businesses in deciding how certain wastes must be handled.

This matrix is provided as an assistance tool. It cannot be used as a substitute for following applicable city, state, and federal laws.

Does your waste contain toxic constituents? Review the list below.YES NO

Toxic Wastes

Based on a health-risk analysis, the EPA developed regulatory levels for the maximum concentration of 40 substances (constituents). Any material that contains one or more of these constituents, at or above the regulatory level, is considered a characteristic (toxicity) hazardous waste with associated waste codes D004-D043. If your waste has any of the constituents listed below, you must determine the level they contain so you can determine if your waste is considered toxic.

To determine this, you can use process knowledge and/or testing using the Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure (TCLP). For example, you could use process knowledge to rule out any of the 40 chemicals you know are not in the product or process that generated the waste. Then, you could use the TCLP on the unknown chemicals in the process. If the waste leaches at or above one of the regulatory levels, the waste is hazardous because of the toxicity characteristic.

View a printer-friendly list of substances and their TCLP regulatory levels or see the table below.

Substance TCLP Regulatory Level (mg/L)
Arsenic 5.0
Barium 100.0
Benzene 0.5
Cadmium 1.0
Carbon tetrachloride 0.5
Chlordane 0.03
Chlorobenzene 100.0
Chloroform 6.0
Chromium 5.0
O-cresol 200.0
M-cresol 200.0
P-cresol 200.0
Cresol 200.0
2,4-D 10.0
1,4-dichlorobenzene 7.5
1,2-dichloroethane 0.5
1,1-dichloroethylene 0.7
2,4-dinitrotoluene 0.13
Endrin 0.02
Heptachlor (and its epoxide) 0.008
Hexachlorobenzene 0.13
Hexachlorobutadiene 0.5
Hexachloroethane 3.0
Lead 5.0
Lindane 0.4
Mercury 0.2
Methoxychlor 10.0
Methyl ethyl ketone 200.0
Nitrobenzene 2.0
Pentachlorophenol 100.0
Pyridine 5.0
Selenium 1.0
Silver 5.0
Tetrachloroethylene 0.7
Toxaphene 0.5
Trichloroethylene 0.5
2,4,5-trichlorophenol 400.0
2,4,6-trichlorophenol 2.0
2,4,5-TP (Silvex) 1.0
Vinyl chloride 0.2