This mid-sized commercial paint manufacturer in Southern California had been in business for over 30 years. They supplied a lot of the home improvement vendors in their local area. As their business grew, they never realized that changing regulations could have this much of a financial impact on them.
Business as usual was costing this manufacturer around $14,000 per year in additional State fees. They were shipping (20) 55 gallon drums of latex and water based paints, and (1) 55 gallon of oil based paints per month on a hazardous waste manifest. As their business grew, their hazardous waste volume increased and their generator status put them into the large generator category.
As regulations regarding air compliant solvents and paints were continually changing, the manufacturer, like most businesses, could not keep up with the ever changing regulations and found themselves in a situation that required immediate attention to avoid any further escalating costs. IDR was asked to look at their company and determine if anything could be done to reduce their costs.
Looking very closely at the manufacturers processes in generating the waste and reviewing their MSDS sheets for the specific paints being used, was the first step. The detailed review found that very little oil and solvent based paint was being used. In fact, most of the waste material that was being generated was the latex and water based paint.
The MSDS sheets further revealed the latex and water based paints did not appear to contain any underlining hazardous waste constituents. A representative sample of the latex and water based paints was obtained to perform a CAM 17 Metals Analysis and a Fish Bio Assay Analysis. We theorized that if the results were negative then we could recommend some specific processes to drastically reduce their overall costs.
The representative sample passed the Fish Bio Assay Analysis and the CAM 17 Metals Analysis did not detect any RCRA or Non-RCRA metals. Based on the results of these tests, we recommended that the contractor keep all the latex and water based paints separate from the oil and solvent based paints.
Since the latex and water based paints were the bulk of the waste they were generating, we recommended that these materials be shipped on a Non-Hazardous Waste Manifest and the oil and solvent based materials be shipped on a Hazardous Waste Manifest.
Richard Espinosa. Vice President – IDR Environmental Services
This one simple change saved the commercial painting manufacturer thousands of dollars in annual State fees and established the correct procedure for handling their hazardous and non-hazardous waste for future projects.