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The following fact sheet was prepared by the ECAR Center staff. Once prepared, each ECAR Center fact sheet undergoes a review process with the applicable state environmental agency(ies). You can check on the status of the review process here. Please read the disclaimer on the status page. While we have tried to present a summary of the essential information on this topic, you should be aware that other items, such as local regulations, may apply to you.
What You Need to Know
Because waste fuel (gasoline or diesel) is flammable, it is classified as a hazardous waste if it is sent for disposal, and you need to manage it according to the hazardous waste rules. Waste fuel is not considered a hazardous waste if it is recycled or burned as a fuel but in Michigan it would need to be managed as liquid industrial waste. This fact sheet will outline the rules for you, and will provide some suggestions for how to handle and store waste fuel in containers.
Waste Classification. Waste fuel is contaminated gasoline or diesel that cannot be used in vehicles. Under most circumstances, waste fuel being disposed of is a hazardous waste because it is ignitable. If the waste fuel is used as a fuel at another facility like a cement kiln, it meets a hazardous waste recycling exemption but it would have to be handled as liquid industrial waste. Hazardous wastes and liquid industrial waste must be managed on-site and disposed of by following specific regulations. See the ECAR Hazardous Waste fact sheet for more details about handling hazardous wastes.
If fuel is reusable, keep records where it went, when, etc. so there is documentation that it wasn't being improperly disposed of. Meet the local fire code and MIOSHA Flammable and Combustible Liquids standard for storage and handling. Specific requirements for storage cabinets and storage areas will depend on the amount of fuel being stored. It should be stored in appropriate containers (properly grounded and closed on an impermeable surface) and clearly labeled "Reusable Gasoline" or "Reusable Diesel Fuel."
Reusable fuel may be used in facility or employee vehicles or sold. The Department of Agriculture Laboratory Division has potential involvement regarding this practice under their REGULATION NO. 564. AUTOMOTIVE GASOLINE PURITY, ADDITIVES, AND GRADING and there could be some limitations under those regulations. The gasoline would need to be from the same season (gasoline formulations change 4 times a year and there's differences depending on the area sold) and speciality blends would need to be considered on individual basis. Contact Celeste Bennett at 517-655-8202 ext 314 for more information.
Storage of Waste Fuel. Waste fuel must be stored in containers meeting DOT specifications performance criteria and must be in good condition. This means:
Waste fuel aboveground storage containers must be located at least 50 feet from your property boundaries. In Michigan, if you can not meet that isolation distance, get approval in writing signed by the local fire department authority that the containers are stored in compliance with the fire prevention code.
Time limits allowed for accumulation of hazardous waste on-site depends on generator status (large quantity, small quantity or conditionally exempt small quantity generator of hazardous waste).
Do not mix waste fuel with any other waste streams, without written permission from your waste hauler.
If waste fuel is being stored in aboveground storage tanks or underground storage tanks, contact the Waste and Hazardous Materials Division, Storage Tank Program for additional requirements that are not covered in this fact sheet.
Labeling. You must follow specific rules for labeling hazardous waste storage containers when waste fuel is going to be disposed of. See the ECAR Hazardous Waste fact sheet for labeling instructions. When being handled as liquid industrial waste for recycling, have it clearly labeled so employees know what is in container. For example, "Waste Gas for Off-site Use" or "Waste Diesel Fuel for Off-site Use" Meet US DOT labeling requirements when shipping off-site.
Spill Control. See Used Oil publication for information about emergency or spill prevention planning requirements.
If a spill occurs, you must perform the following cleanup steps:
Record Keeping. You must follow specific rules for keeping records of hazardous waste accumulated on-site and shipped for disposal. See the ECAR Hazardous Waste fact sheet for record keeping instructions. Liquid industrial waste regulations require waste characterization and manifests to be kept 3 years.
Links to the Regulations. Use the following links to view the regulations pertaining to waste fuel storage and management.
When an inspector comes to your facility, there are certain things he or she checks to see if you are in compliance with environmental regulations. It makes good sense for you to perform a "self-audit" and catch and correct problems before they result in penalties. Also, there are some compliance incentives associated with self-audits (see Audit Policy Page).
Use the following list to audit your waste fuel storage areas and management procedures.
Most regulations tell you what you have to do to be in compliance, but they don't explain how to do it. That's where "best management practices" come into play. BMPs are proven methods that help you to get into compliance and stay there.