Decision support tools (online wizards, interactive checklists, etc.) can simplify and encourage compliance with environmental statutes and regulations. This joint effort by U.S. EPA and the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) explored potential designs for a user-friendly, decision support tool that would helps facilities to determine their generator status and identify other requirements under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).
U.S. EPA and ADEQ sponsored a one-day Kaizen event that brought together 11 representatives of seven Arizona generators of different sizes. To maintain focus with limited time, the project scope was refined to examine liquid solvent waste in a case study approach to how facilities make determinations and what tools can ensure accurate decisions are made the first time at the facility level.
U.S. EPA provided support for expert Lean facilitation at the Kaizen event and additional consultant work on the scoping report. U.S. EPA and ADEQ staff conducted the project in joint governance. U.S. EPA’s Office of Land and Emergency Management provided supplemental resources to complete development of the decision support tool.
The final report, completed on December 31, 2015, concluded that there is strong interest and need for materials and tools that can clarify RCRA compliance issues, as underscored by the broad participation in this event, even among sophisticated large quantity generators.
U.S. EPA’s Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery took the next step to develop the decision support tool through guidance that is easily navigated on handheld devices, to help facilities make more accurate determinations on their liquid solvent waste.
In addition, this tool enables facilities to easily find information about recycling or reusing their solvents, which can reduce waste management costs and the nation’s need for virgin materials.