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Environmental Health

Hazardous Waste Program

Hazardous wastes come in all shapes and forms. They may be liquids, solids, or sludge. They may be the by-products of manufacturing processes or simply commercial products that have been discarded. Whatever their form, proper management and disposal of hazardous waste is essential to protect the environment.

The California Hazardous Waste Control Law requires a Hazardous Waste Generator, which stores or accumulates hazardous waste for periods grater than 90 days at an on site facility or for periods greater than 144 hours at an offsite or transfer facility, treats, or transports hazardous Waste, to obtain a permit to conduct such activities. The majority of the City’s hazardous waste generators do not have a permit to store, treat or transport hazardous waste. Thus, the Hazardous Waste Law limits the City’s Hazardous Waste Generators onsite storage of hazardous waste at an unlicensed facility to 90 days and an offsite storage to 144 hours. It also restricts the City’s Hazardous Waste Generators from treating their wastes or from transporting hazardous waste. Violators of the Hazardous Waste Law are subject to civil and criminal penalties up to $250,000 per day for each violation and jail time.

Assistance for City Facilities

The Hazardous Waste Program staff have developed a 90–day hazardous waste disposal program whereby every 90-days the accumulated hazardous waste is removed by licensed hazardous waste haulers under contract with the City and County of San Francisco. The staff coordinate the disposal with the City site coordinators and hazardous waste haulers, monitor the haulers packing the hazardous waste for regulatory compliance and safe handling procedures, sign the Uniform Hazardous Waste Manifest, and reconcile and record the manifest information after the hauler delivers the waste at the final disposal site.

Other Programs Under Environmental Health Section's Hazardous Waste Program

Analyzing Soil for Hazardous Waste: reviews soil sampling plans, soil analysis plans, and soil analysis reports deemed necessary for new developments requiring analysis of soil contaminants within designated areas of San Francisco.

Local Oversight Program: provides competent regulatory oversight at Underground Storage Tank release sites, in accordance with State laws, regulations, and ever-changing Water Board policies.

Site Assessment & Mitigation: provides oversight of the mitigation (improvement) of contaminated sites in the City and County of San Francisco.