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Washington State Dental Association

Proposed Changes to WA Dangerous Waste Regulations

Washington’s Department of Ecology (Ecology) will be amending Chapter 173-303 WAC, Dangerous Waste Regulations, the standards for the safe management of dangerous waste in our state. Ecology will be amending these rules to incorporate new federal hazardous waste rules. Regulation changes that will most likely impact your practice pertain to pharmaceutical waste, as dental offices meet the definition of a health care facility. 

Please note the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has not yet adopted the final pharmaceutical hazardous waste rule. However, Ecology is starting the rule adoption process but will wait until EPA adopts the final rule before adopting the state final pharmaceutical rule. The EPA is expected to adopt the final rule sometime in 2017. 

The goals in adopting new pharmaceutical waste rules are to reduce the amount of confusion surrounding this topic, reduce associated regulatory burdens, and help health care facilities as well as waste management vendors properly dispose of waste.  The majority of the new rules will be required for medium and large quantity generators of dangerous waste, while a few rules will apply to small quantity generators, such as a prohibition on sewering of pharmaceuticals.

View the Preliminary Draft Rules (view pg. 154- WAC 173-303-555 Special requirements for management of dangerous waste pharmaceuticals & pg. 164, section 5, Healthcare facilities that are small quantity generators).

View Ecology’s Summary of Draft Amendments to Dangerous Waste Regulations.

Comment on the proposed rule amendments by December 20, 2016. 

For more information visit the Department of Ecology’s website


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