June 30, 2019 marked the first full year since the launch of the EPA’s e-Manifest: the new national system for electronically tracking hazardous-waste shipments. It replaces the oh so twentieth century paper ‘n pencil manifests you’ve been using, but that are about as old—and nearly as unsophisticated—as your Uncle Arnold’s 1976 Ford LTD
As a hazardous waste generator, you’re undoubtedly conversant with the whys and wherefores of the EPA manifest. But in case you’re a noobie, have been preoccupied with Game of Thrones, or have been living unawares in Your Own Private Idaho, let’s review:
Whether electron- or pulp-based, the EPA manifest is a form-filling exercise completed by you. It indelibly attaches a hazardous waste to your enterprise as the waste migrates from your site toward the hazardous waste management facility that will ultimately process it—along with all the legal, financial, and social liabilities that are endemic to hazardous material removal.
We love a party—but is this celebration a tad premature?
Just last March the EPA announced on its website “…a significant achievement in modernizing the nation’s cradle-to-grave hazardous waste tracking process, saving valuable time, resources and dollars for industry and states.”
And what exactly was that achievement?
In concrete terms, it was that over a million electronic manifests were submitted by industry and state users by the end of last February. If you’re doing the math, that’s a span of eight months, and so thinking linearly, about 125 thousand per month.
But the EPA statement provided no data concerning the actual amount of time, money, and/or resources businesses have actually “saved” so far. Instead, the EPA only repeated its initial estimate that the “…e-Manifest will ultimately reduce the burden associated with preparing shipping manifests by between 300,000 and 700,000 hours, saving state and industry users $75-$90 million annually…”
Alas, you can’t cut a check against those numbers. They’re simply projections masquerading as accrued benefits. But maybe this factoid will warm your heart: the EPA currently receives about 5,000 e-Manifests daily, generating over $1 million in fees monthly for the system’s care and feeding. Yowzah!
So what’s the real benefit?
Although the “increased effectiveness of compliance-monitoring of waste shipments by regulators” will undoubtedly be a mixed blessing, we believe there’s good face validity for most other EPA claims about the (potential) benefits of the e-Manifest System.
We’re all looking forward to:
- More accurate and timely info about hazmat shipments
- Faster notification of discrepancies or other problems regarding a hazmat shipment
- A single hub for one-stop reporting of manifest data to both EPA and states
- Integrating manifest reporting with other RCRA and state reporting requirements
Looking for a way to make your e-Manifest process easier?
The PegEx Platform is a new purpose-engineered cloud-based tool for organizing your hazardous waste management.
It includes a CRM System, Customer Portal, Waste Profile Builder, e-Manifest Builder, and more.
But a user-friendly Operations Module is its most exciting feature relative to the new e-Manifest requirement.
Its development chronologically coincided with that of the EPA e-filing initiative, so it’s optimized to facilitate the fast & efficient completion of an e-Manifest form.
Nobody else has anything like it!
You can find out more about the PegEx Platform in general—and its Operations Module in specific—by clicking here.