Generator Improvements Rule (GIR) Summary

The Generator Improvements Rule (GIR) was developed by EPA to make necessary changes to the hazardous waste generator regulatory program by making the regulations easier to understand, improving environmental protection, and providing greater flexibility in how hazardous waste is managed to better fit today's business operations. Most of the rule changes are clarifications to the existing regulations meant to facilitate improved compliance.

EPA proposed numerous changes to the hazardous waste generator regulatory program on September 25, 2015. EPA received more than 200 comments from state and local governments, the generating industry, the hazardous waste management industry, academia, the energy sector, retailers, and others. The rule was revised accordingly, and the final Generator Improvements Rule appeared in the Federal Register on November 28, 2016, and became effective federally on May 30, 2017.

The new Generator Improvement Rule was recently adopted into the Virginia Hazardous Waste Management Regulations (VHWMR) as it was written.  GIR becomes effective in Virginia on April 8, 2018. This rule will affect what requirements generators must comply with in the future.

DEQ is glad to help with compliance assistance to facilities. DEQ has created support documents available through DEQ’s website under the Hazardous Waste section. For more information or questions regarding GIR, please contact the appropriate DEQ regional staff .

Objectives of GIR

The GIR includes over 60 changes to the hazardous waste generator regulations that can be organized into four program objectives:

  • Reorganize the regulations to make them easier to understand, therefore improve compliance
  • Provide increased flexibility for generators in managing hazardous wastes
  • Clarify existing requirements for generators to improve compliance
  • Improve environmental protection
  • Make technical corrections to inadvertent mistakes in the regulation

Click Here to Download this Content and all Subsequent Detail Objectives

Reorganization of the Hazardous Waste Generator Regulations

The table below summarizes the reorganization of the hazardous waste generator regulatory program. As part of this reorganization, a number of the generator regulations that are currently located in other parts of the hazardous waste standards, have been moved into 40 CFR Part 262 to reduce the current lists of cross references.

Table - Generator Regulation Reorganization

Generator Category   New Regulatory Citation  Previous Regulatory Citation
Very Small Quantity Generator (VSQG) previously known as CESQG  40 CFR §262.14  40 CFR §261.5
 SQGs and LQGs - Satellite Accumulation Area (SAA)  40 CFR §262.15  40 CFR §262.34 (c)
 Small Quantity Generator (SQG)  40 CFR §262.16  40 CFR §262.34 (d)-(f)
 Large Quantity Generator (LQG)  40 CFR §262.17  40 CFR §262.34 (a)-(b)

Definitions and General Standards - GIR Regulation Changes

This table was designed to offer a crosswalk of previous regulations to the reorganized regulations as a result of adoption of Generator Improvement Rule, this table was developed by EPA and provided by DEQ. 

Table - Definitions and General Standards


Previous Citation

New Citation


Definitions of Generator Categories

40 CFR § 260.10, 261.5 and 262.34

40 CFR § 260.10

Previous definition of SQG in § 260.10 was outdated. Generator categories were based on § 261.5 and 262.34.

Hazardous Waste Limits for VSQGs

40 CFR § 261.5(a) and (e)

40 CFR § 260.10

Included in the new definition of VSQG

Purpose, Scope, and Applicability

40 CFR § 262.10

40 CFR § 262.10

Not moved, but expanded significantly

Hazardous Waste Determination and Recordkeeping

40 CFR § 262.11 and 262.40(c)

40 CFR § 262.11

Content in § 262.11 is expanded and § 262.40(c) is incorporated

Generator Category Determination

40 CFR § 261.5(c), (d), and (h)–(j)

40 CFR § 262.13

New section that explains how to count hazardous waste to determine generator category

EPA Identification Numbers

40 CFR § 262.12

40 CFR § 262.18

Re-notification requirements are also in this section

Landfill Ban for Liquids

40 CFR § 258.28

40 CFR § 262.35

For SQGs and LQGs

GIR Complete Crosswalk of Previous Regulations to Reorganized Regulations

The complete crosswalk of previous regulations to reorganized regulations (including the Definitions and General Standards table) are available throughout DEQ’s Hazardous Waste pages located by regulator topic. 

Click Here to Download the GIR Crosswalk Tables

Frequently Asked Questions to EPA - GIR

EPA's Frequent Questions About the Implementing the Hazardous Waste Generator Improvement Rule; this window is managed by EPA's Website.

Frequently Asked Questions to VA DEQ - GIR

These are frequently asked questions regarding the hazardous waste Generator Improvements Rule implemented in Virginia.  These questions are generated by DEQ's staff and hazardous waste generators have posed to DEQ. The questions not previously addressed through EPA's frequently asked questions and are brought to DEQ's attention during training courses will be posted in this section.  Please check back to see if your question has been answered.

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Virginia Department of
Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 1105
Richmond, VA 23218
(804) 698-4000

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