- Energy Recovery Home
- Basic Information
- Waste Management Hierarchy
- Related Regulations
- Frequent Questions
- Additional Information
Regulations Related to Energy Recovery from Waste
Energy recovery from waste is important in the development of sustainable energy policies. EPA continues to develop regulations that encourage energy recovery from hazardous materials or materials that might otherwise be disposed of as solid waste.
Gasification is a process that converts any material containing carbonsuch as coal, petroleum, or biomassinto synthesis gas (syngas) composed of hydrogen and carbon monoxide. The syngas can then be burned to produce electricity or further processed to produce vehicle fuel. As part of EPA's effort to promote flexible, innovative ways to convert waste to energy, EPA finalized an exclusion to the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) regulation for oil-bearing hazardous waste generated at a petroleum refinery in January 2008. This exclusion ensures that the gasification of these materials will have the same regulatory status (i.e., excluded) as other oil-bearing hazardous waste reinserted into the petroleum refining process.
Identification of Non-Hazardous Materials that are Solid Waste
The 2011 non-hazardous secondary material (NHSM) final rule under RCRA identifies which non-hazardous secondary materials are, or are not, solid wastes when burned in combustion units. This determines which Clean Air Act emission standards a combustion unit is required to meet.