Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) Land Division Hazardous Waste Branch
See ADDRESSES & CONTACTS for addresses and telephone numbers
See national section for basic information and federal regulations.
Comparison: State vs. Federal
• Rules. The federal rules and exemptions for neutralizing hazardous waste are effective in Alabama. As in federal regulation, Alabama allows for the chemical alteration of corrosive wastes known as elementary neutralization of wastes. This fairly common process is mentioned in the federal regulations at 40 CFR 260.10 and was incorporated by state regulation. The neutralization procedure involves adjusting the pH level of the corrosive waste so that it has a neutral value of 7. The waste may still be hazardous, however, if it has other characteristic properties, such as ignitability or toxicity. See the state sections CHARACTERISTIC WASTE and HAZARDOUS WASTE TREATMENT for more information.
Examples of industries that might use neutralization of wastes are automobile industries that use acids for cleaning engine parts that create an acidic corrosive waste, and cleaning industries that use caustics in their operations that create an alkaline corrosive waste.
Precautions. Although the neutralizing process is simple in theory, in practice it can create some industry problems, including creating easily vaporized contaminants, producing excessive heat, corroding pipes and other apparatus used in the process, causing a waste that is too acidic or too basic by adding too much ...