Proposed Amendments to the Coal Ash Regulations, Public Hearing Registration Open
EPA is proposing further amendments to the regulations governing the disposal of coal combustion residuals, commonly known as coal ash.
The proposal addresses two issues remanded by the courts back to EPA for action. EPA is proposing a modification to one of the criteria used to determine if coal ash is being beneficially used or would be considered disposal. The second proposed change is to the requirements for managing piles of coal ash. Other proposed changes include revisions to enhance public access to information.
In addition to accepting written comments on this proposal, EPA is holding two public hearings – one in person in Arlington, Virginia on October 2, 2019, and a second one that will be held virtually.
To learn more about this proposal and the public hearings, learn how to comment and register to speak or observe, visit: https://www.epa.gov/coalash/coal-ash-rule#July2019proposal.
Upcoming e-Manifest Fiscal Years 2020-2021 User Fees
EPA announced the new e-Manifest user fees for fiscal years 2020-2021 (October 1, 2019-September 30, 2021). These user fees are set based on the manifest usage and processing costs for each manifest type.
EPA encourages the hazardous waste industry to adopt fully-electronic manifesting as soon as possible so that industry members can take maximum advantage of the benefits and cost savings of electronic manifesting. However, EPA acknowledges that it will take time for industries and receiving facilities to fully transition to electronic manifests. EPA supports the wide adoption of electronic manifesting by the regulated community as soon as it is feasible.
For more information and to view the new user fees, visit https://www.epa.gov/e-manifest/e-manifest-user-fees-and-payment-information#2020fees.
Comment Period Open for Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) 108(b) Electric Power Industry Proposal
EPA is seeking public comment on a proposed rule not imposing financial responsibility requirements under CERCLA Section 108(b) for Electric Power Generation, Transportation, and Distribution facilities.
The comment period for the proposed changes is open for 60 days, through September 27, 2019. To learn more, view the proposal, and how to submit comments visit: https://www.epa.gov/superfund/proposed-action-financial-responsibility-requirements-under-cercla-section-108b-classes.
Incremental Sampling Methodology (ISM) at PCB Cleanup Sites
ISM has been shown to be a valid and effective method for determining the concentrations of contaminants, including PCBs, in heterogeneous soils when designed appropriately. This document has a brief description of ISM and provides EPA’s policy of reviewing and approving site-specific applications to use ISM at PCB cleanup sites: https://www.epa.gov/pcbs/incremental-sampling-methodology-ism-pcb-cleanup-sites.
New and Updated Pharmaceutical Frequent Questions Posted
EPA recently updated several frequent questions about the final rule establishing management standards for hazardous waste pharmaceuticals and amending the P075 listing for nicotine. Additionally, EPA added a section about the sewer ban, which was effective August 21, 2019.
Check out the frequent questions out here: https://www.epa.gov/hwgenerators/frequent-questions-about-management-standards-hazardous-waste-pharmaceuticals-and.
Use these EPA resources to learn more, or contact SCS at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll help answer your questions.
Paul Migwi joined SCS in May 2017 as an Associate Professional in the Overland Park office. Paul graduated from Kansas State University in 2017 earning a Bachelor’s of Science in Civil Engineering with a structural and environmental focus. He is now pursuing his Master’s in Engineering Management at KSU.
Paul was born in Kenya, and at the age of sixteen moved to the United States with his family. As a child, his dream was to become a pilot. When he grew up, he chased his dream and joined the military. Paul chose the United States Air Force because of its Civil Engineering and Pilot programs. In the four years that he served in the Air Force, he learned a lot about teamwork, engineering, and how to achieve his career goals.
After a year in training, Paul was deployed to Afghanistan for six months. After he returned, he worked at different Air Force bases and learned about construction, buildings, and concrete sheet metal. One of his best experiences and most memorable moments was at his first station in Guam where he worked with colleagues to construct a building in the middle of the forest. They used a technique called concrete tilt-up, which is pouring concrete sections horizontally on concrete slabs, and once they are cured, raising, or “tilting”, them with a crane and attaching them on a Pre-Engineering building (PEB). After multiple sections are created and raised, a building is eventually created. When the project was finished, Paul was amazed. Seeing the results of all the hard work he and his colleagues put into a building was a very gratifying feeling. He learned a lot about the technical process, but also about the importance of working as a team. To this day he still remembers just standing there and looking back at the completed building; “it looked awesome,” he said.
Paul’s military experience has helped him in so many ways, especially working well with others. He learned the value of teamwork, and how to work with different personalities. Teamwork has definitely helped him be successful at SCS Engineers. Paul says his favorite part of working at SCS is the people. It doesn’t matter what project he works on, he always enjoys working with his colleagues. They are helpful and supportive and always happy to lend a hand, and they are a big reason why he feels he has been successful at SCS.
Although Paul’s dream to become a pilot led him to join the military, his career goals and ambitions have changed. He enjoyed mathematics and science and wanted to pursue a career where he could use those skills. He majored in Civil Engineering and interned with a construction firm, envisioning a career in construction. Environmental engineering had not crossed his mind until he attended a KSU Career Fair where he interacted with an SCS employee who opened up his eyes to the possibilities. Later that day, Paul did his own research on SCS and was extremely impressed. He loved everything about the company, from what we do, the size of the Overland Park office, and the projects we perform. It also helped that he had friends who had interned with SCS in the past.
His everyday work varies at SCS; he designs using AutoCAD, and his main focus is on solid waste. He prepares Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plans (SWPP), Spill Prevention Control and Countermeasures Plans (SPCC), Facility Response Plans (FRP), and Control Quality Assurance (CQA), among other projects. Paul’s goal is to be out in the field more often. He believes that, in order to become a better designer, he needs to understand how things work in the field.
One of the biggest challenges that Paul has been successful in overcoming is balancing work and life. As a full time student and full time SCSer, it sounds very simple, but time management has made a huge difference in Paul’s life.
One of his greatest achievements and contributions at SCS was working on a permit modification. When one of their sites was at risk of a permit violation, Paul and the team had to redesign a practical and feasible landfill that would be acceptable to the state. When redesigning this landfill, Paul had to keep certain requirements in mind, such as water storage and how it affects the existing infrastructure, elevation, slope, and overall design. This project involved a lot of long days and nights, and, according to Paul, has been the best project he has worked on by far. It helped him see the big picture and truly understand how other projects work.
Paul is very ambitious and goal-driven; he has done a lot in his career and continues to push himself to grow every day. In his free time, he likes to be challenged and enjoys biking on bike trails. His advice to anyone interested in SCS is to, “Jump at the first chance you get; it is an awesome place to work!”
SCS would like to thank Paul and all of the Veterans at SCS for their service. Happy Veteran’s Day to everyone who has served!
SCS Engineers announces today that they are a founding sponsor of WISR – Women in Solid Waste & Recycling. WISR is the first of its kind nonprofit organization created in 2017, dedicated to preparing women for leadership positions in the industry by organizing chapters in key industry centers and providing opportunities for networking, leadership development, career mapping and mentoring. SCS Engineers’ support will help establish education programs in leadership as well as contribute to the creation of new chapters in at least six cities by the end of 2019. WISR is in the process of forming chapters in key industry centers — including Los Angeles, New York City, and Atlanta — that will offer quarterly programs including professional development with skills training, site tours, networking and leadership training.
“We look forward to meeting with colleagues in the solid waste, recycling, and environmental services fields to share our scientific, financial, and technical knowledge to move sustainable waste management forward in the U.S.,” stated Michelle Leonard, a vice president of SCS Engineers. “WISR will help us make a difference; for women and for the industry.”
University of Central Florida, MS
Robert P. Stearns/SCS Engineers Master’s Scholar
Project: Field Investigation of an Elevated Temperature Florida Landfill
For reasons that are not entirely clear, incidents of elevated temperatures in municipal solid waste landfills are occurring at increasing frequency. These landfills present temperatures that well exceed the range tolerable for micro-organisms (~176°F). Given the significance of elevated temperatures at landfills and the growing number of landfills with these issues, the goal of Joslyn’s research is to develop a more complete understanding of elevated temperature landfills using landfill gas and leachate monitoring data, specifically in the state of Florida.
Robert P. Stearns, Chairman and CoFounder of SCS Engineers, joined the EREF Board of Directors in 1999 and served as Chairman from 2004–2005. At SCS, he directed or served in a review capacity on many of the firm’s solid waste management-related projects. In 2007 EREF awarded the first Robert P. Stearns/SCS Engineers Master’s Scholarship, which was established to expand EREF’s successful doctoral-level scholarship program.
In this day and age, a back office customer information software system is a “must” for solid waste agencies managing inventories, work orders, and large numbers of customers.
However, many solid waste agencies have inadequate computer hardware and software systems to enable tracking of work productivity and customer service. Oftentimes, many use a combination of an Excel-based software system and manual card systems to track residential and commercial accounts. To the world of business operations, these manual systems are analogous to a stone and chisel versus a typewriter.
There are a wide variety of management information and software products used by solid waste agencies across the U.S. Each has its particular advocates and uses in the solid waste management practice. This article will provide an overview of the major trends in software development.
Increasingly, solid waste and recycling agencies are being asked by their political decision makers to improve efficiency, focus on customers, and reduce increased costs. Many agencies are managed with a combination of manual processes, desktop computer tools, limited vehicle and cart tracking and management tools, and custom databases. While effective, these methodologies often entail more effort, labor, and costs.
Smart technologies are expected to grow substantially over the next decade as agencies attempt to minimize their overall costs in solid waste collection and recycling and increase overall efficiency. As discussed briefly in this article, smart technologies have advantages and disadvantages. As agencies investigate technology to help support their service, ensure continued quality service delivery and meet demanding business requirements, it is important to conduct feasibility assessments to evaluate the economic costs to implement and update the use of new technologies in a sustainable manner.
Marc J. Rogoff and Laurel Urena of SCS Engineers.
SCS Engineers’ Phillip E. Gearing, PE is a winner of the SWANA 2017 Young Professional Award from the Wisconsin Badger Chapter. The Solid Waste Association of North America honors individuals like Phil who make a significant difference in the solid waste industry.
Phil represents the best of the young professionals working within Wisconsin’s solid waste industry. Clients, contractors, and team members appreciate Phil’s leadership and passion for doing the job right.
He is a dedicated father of three children and an avid fan of all things Wisconsin, namely Badger sports, Green Bay Packer football, and Brewer baseball. Wisconsin from head to toe! Phil was raised on a dairy farm in Jackson County near Merrillan and attended the University of Wisconsin – Madison where he earned his B.S. in Geological Engineering, Geology, and Geophysics.
Phil serves clients out of the SCS Engineers office in Madison, WI.
The Society of American Military Engineers recognized SCS Engineers for their 15 years of service and volunteer support at the District of Columbia post this month. The award was presented by Commander Craig Clutts of the US Navy, the Outgoing DC Post President.
On hand to receive the award for SCS was John Tabella, PG, LEED AP®, National Expert for Environmental Due Diligence and for Federal Services; Heather Blake (pictured), Federal Marketing Coordinator, and Dave Hostetter, PE, LEED AP®, and CEM at SCS Engineers.
SCS Engineers has a very long track record of solving environmental and energy management, solid waste, hazardous waste, water, and air compliance challenges. Approaches we pioneered include risk-based cleanups, voluntary cleanups, accelerated investigations, presumptive and sustainable remedies, environmental management systems, energy systems, and waste minimization. These approaches are at the forefront of local and Federal environmental and energy programs today.
SCS provides professional engineering and scientific services with a focus on environmental protection and conservation of resources. Our clients come back because we find practical approaches to even the most complex environmental challenges.
Getting a firm handle on a solid waste operation and expenses is a challenge for any solid waste agency manager or landfill operator. It is particularly imperative in this era of “lean and mean” budgets and looming regulatory policy. Doing more with less is the watchword for most operations across the country still reeling from the financial impacts of the Great Recession.
SCS Engineers has created a package of articles to help you identify if your landfill, landfill gas, or solid waste operation is ready for 2017. We hope this useful guidance will help you plan for the upcoming year. SCS professionals are always available to answer questions and provide advice. Find the office or SCS professional nearest to you by clicking on one the links here: Offices and Professionals.
Download, print or share this package by using the download button under the articles or by using the navigation at left. The package includes the following information written by SCS National Experts: