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Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA)

  • By: David Hosansky
  • In: Green Technology: An A-to-Z Guide
  • Edited by: Dustin Mulvaney
  • Subject:Environmental Sciences (general), Environmental Technology, Policy & Management

The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), which is the central U.S. law governing the disposal of solid wastes, including hazardous solid wastes, was enacted by Congress in 1976. RCRA gives authority to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to regulate hazardous waste from the point of generation to final disposal or storage, which is often referred to as the “cradle-to-grave” movement of waste. The law also provides a regulatory framework for nonhazardous solid wastes. Its approach is generally designed to be proactive, providing for the safe handling and containment of wastes as they are generated. RCRA has been amended on several occasions, most notably in 1984 when lawmakers expanded the law's coverage of hazardous industrial wastes, including underground storage tanks.

RCRA hazardous waste provisions regulate ...

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