CONTROL OF TOXIC INDUSTRIAL WASTE
OVERVIEW OF MANAGEMENT OF HAZARDOUS WASTE
The handling, transportation, treatment and disposal of toxic industrial waste in Singapore are controlled under the Environmental Public Health (Toxic Industrial Waste) Regulations 1988. The list of controlled toxic industrial wastes can be found in the Schedule of the regulations.
Under the regulations, all toxic industrial waste collectors must be licensed. The transport of toxic industrial waste in quantities exceeding those stipulated in the Schedule requires a transport approval.
Hard copies of the Environmental Public Health (Toxic Industrial Waste) Regulations 1988 can be purchased at SNP Corporation Ltd, Legal Publishing located at 1 Kim Seng Promenade #18-01/06, Great World City East Tower (Tel: 68269691).
More details can be found in the Management of Hazardous Waste information paper.
You may wish to download the list of toxic industrial waste and PVC waste collectors.
APPLICATION FOR TOXIC INDUSTRIAL WASTE COLLECTOR LICENCE
The Environmental Public Health (Toxic Industrial Waste) Regulations 1988 require all authorised toxic waste collectors to be licensed. Licence for the collection of toxic waste will be issued on condition that:-
The toxic waste treatment, storage and disposal facility owned by the collector is located in a suitable industrial area outside water catchment;
The types and quantities of toxic wastes are commensurate with the treatment process and disposal facilities;
Adequate measures such as containment areas, leak detection and warning devices, proper emergency action plans, neutralising agents, handling gear, absorbent material, etc are provided to prevent and mitigate any accidental release of the toxic wastes;
Incinerator complies with NEA's Guidelines for a Special Waste Incinerator.
Holders of toxic waste collector's licences are required to keep records of toxic wastes they collected, stored, treated and disposed of. They are required to store, process, treat and dispose of toxic wastes at approved premises and in accordance with standards and practices acceptable to the National Environment Agency. They are also required to submit emergency response plan for dealing with any accidental release of toxic wastes if large quantities of wastes are stored in their premises.
For more details on the above requirements, please go to Requirements for Toxic Industrial Waste Collectors.
To apply for toxic industrial waste collector licence, public can submit the application form electronically via http://app1.env.gov.sg/pcls/index.jsp.
APPLICATION FOR TRANSPORT APPROVAL
The transportation of toxic wastes in an amount exceeding quantities prescribed in the Environmental Public Health (Toxic Industrial Waste) Regulations 1988 requires a written approval from PCD. For prescribed quantities for transportation, please see the Schedule.
A Transport Approval is given subject to the following conditions:-
The containers conveying the toxic wastes must be designed and tested in accordance with an acceptable Code of Practice;
The routes used must be approved;
The transportation is restricted to be carried out during day time;
An adequate emergency action plan must be put up to deal with any accidental release of the toxic wastes.
The Codes of Practice accepted by PCD are recognised international standards, such as the European Agreement on the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road (ADR), the United Nations Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods and the International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code.
Online application for Transport Approval to transport toxic industrial waste must be supported by information as required under the document requirement for Transport Approval
PCD in conjunction with the Maritime and Port Authority and the FSB has implemented a training course for drivers of road tankers and tank containers carrying petroleum products, hazardous chemicals and toxic wastes. The course teaches safety requirements and precautions, first aid and fire-fighting. For details on driver training course, please call 67319677.
A trip-ticket system is also implemented to monitor the movement of the toxic wastes between generators and licensed collectors. Under the system, generators of toxic industrial wastes are required to put up consignment notes for every transportation of toxic industrial wastes exceeding the quantities stipulated in the Schedule.
WRITTEN PERMISSION FOR DISPOSAL AT DUMPING GROUND
Solid residues such as sludge from wastewater treatment facilities and flyash from waste incinerators may contain toxic contaminants such as heavy metals. Such wastes shall be treated to comply with leachate test standards before disposing of at an approved landfill site.
Application for written permission to dispose of such wastes must be accompanied by a recent report of analytical results from leachate tests carried out on the wastes. The report must be from a SAC-SINGLAS accredited laboratory. Please call 67319677 for application for written permission for disposal of wastes at the dumping ground.
Leaching test - Recommended acceptance criteria for suitability of industrial wastes for landfill disposal
A list of some SAC-SINGLAS accredited laboratories
DISPOSAL OF ASBESTOS WASTES AT DUMPING GROUND
Any person who undertakes work involving asbestos is required to notify the Chief Inspector of Factories by submitting the Notification of Process Involving Asbestos form to the Occupational Safety and Health Division of Ministry of Manpower, at least 28 days before the commencement of such work. More information regarding the handling/removal of asbestos material can be found in the 'Guidelines on The Removal of Asbestos Materials in Buildings' at MOM's website.
Contractors who are responsible in removing the asbestos wastes/debris, are then to engage a NEA licenced asbestos disposal company to clear and transport the asbestos wastes to Semakau Landfill. These licenced disposal companies own barges and have the expertise in handling and barging the asbestos safely to Semakau Landfill.
You may wish to download the list of NEA licenced asbestos wastes contractors Guidelines on the transportation and disposal of asbestos waste can be found here.
CONTROL OF BIOHAZARDOUS WASTES
Wastes from the hospitals include infectious waste, pathological waste, contaminated sharps, routine clinical waste, cytotoxic waste, radioactive waste, pharmaceutical waste, chemical waste and general waste.
Infectious waste, pathological waste, contaminated sharps and other contaminated waste from treatment areas are considered as biohazardous wastes which need special handling and disposal. Infectious waste, in addition, will need pre-treatment before it is disposed of as biohazardous waste.
Biohazardous wastes are required to be disposed of by licensed hospital waste contractors.
Classification of biohazardous wastes
Colour-coded disposal bags are used in hospitals to segregate wastes that need special handling and disposal. Yellow bags are used for biohazardous wastes. Purple and red bags are used for cytotoxic and radioactive wastes respectively. For general waste, black disposal bags are used.
Used syringes with attached needles are discarded as one unit in a designated and properly labelled plastic sharps container. When the container is full, it is securely closed and disposed of in the large yellow bag provided at the utility / disposal room.
Pharmaceutical wastes are further classified into general pharmaceutical waste such as vitamin tablets, paracetamol tablets, creams and ointments etc, and special pharmaceutical waste such as antibiotics, vaccines, other immunological products, and controlled drugs such as cocaine. Only special pharmaceutical waste needs special disposal by incineration. General pharmaceutical waste can be disposed of as general refuse.
At present, there are 3 licensed hospital waste disposal contractors. They are M/s Cramoil Singapore Pte Ltd at Tuas View Lane, M/s SembCorp Environmental Management Pte Ltd at Tuas Ave 18 and M/s Aroma Chemical Pte Ltd at Tuas View Lane. They operate a fleet of 9 totally enclosed trucks to provide collection and transportation of the biohazardous waste. All 3 contractors have dedicated hospital waste incinerators to incinerate the biohazardous and used cytotoxic wastes from the hospitals.
CONTROL OF TANKER CLEANING ACTIVITIES AND THE DISPOSAL OF SLUDGE AND SLOP OIL
Since 4 April 1993, Singapore implemented a scheme to tighten control on tanker cleaning activities and the disposal of sludge and slop oil generated from tanker cleaning activities. Under the scheme, the Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) of Singapore will only issue permits to registered tanker cleaning contractor. These contractors are registered with the National Environment Agency (NEA) to carry out tanker cleaning activities in designated areas.
To register as a tanker cleaning contractor, please complete the application form and submit by fax. For enquiries on application, please call 67319677.
ELECTRONIC CONSIGNMENT NOTE SYSTEM (E-TRACKING)
Under the Environmental Public Health (Toxic Industrial Waste) Regulations 1988, all consignees shall prepare consignment notes when transporting or consigning for transport of any toxic industrial waste in an amount exceeding the quantities as specified in the third column of the Schedule.
Since 25th February 2002, the electronic consignment note system, e-Tracking, was launched to gradually replace the manual consignment note system. e-Tracking will be fully replacing the manual system with effect from 15th April 2002. All new and existing toxic industrial waste generators shall have to register with the licensed toxic industrial waste collectors in order to receive the User ID and Business Reference ID to log into the e-Tracking system. For more instructions on registering as a user, you may go to Instructions to Register as A User
To log into e-Tracking, please go to Consignment Note System (e-Tracking). You may download the user manual once you have logged into the e-Tracking system. Alternatively, you may also download the e-Tracking User Manual for Generator and User Manual for Collector here.