Complex local, state, and federal regulations—along with varying definitions of hazardous waste—make it more challenging than ever to comply with the evolving landscape of waste. Recently, regulations governing the disposal of sensitive materials (such as HIPAA, RCRA, OSHA, and MWMA) have grown more stringent and enforcement has increased. These changes have resulted in escalating multi-million-dollar fines, costly corrective action plans, and public relations nightmares. Companies in multiple industries have made headlines for settlements, and many organizations are renewing their focus on compliance and privacy programs.
An effective compliance program is complex, but taking the first steps can be simple. Savvy organizations that can demonstrate proactive risk mitigation will often fare far better than those who can’t. In fact, most large fines rarely penalize improper disposal alone, including hefty additional fines for the lack of safeguards and process control to prevent these violations.
These five steps will help build a strong waste compliance program:
A waste audit program is the foundation of each of these steps. Whether seeking to better understand problem areas, documenting risk management activities, or tracking the impact of ongoing education and enforcement – waste audits provide a formal, quantifiable metric to measure success.
For companies with a large, distributed portfolio of sites, waste audits can seem like a daunting task, requiring deep regulatory knowledge, waste auditing expertise, and credible reporting from a third-party.
ENGIE Impact helps clients address the unique regulatory challenges facing industries heavily impacted by waste regulations, such as healthcare, hospitality, banking, and retail. Leveraging a deep understanding of federal, state, and municipal regulations, ENGIE Impact helps businesses not only assess their risks, but also develop actionable programs and measure their success over time.
ENGIE Impact’s unique approach to waste auditing focuses on: