EHS Administration, Hazardous Waste Management

Hazardous Waste e-Manifests: The Program and Your Options

Waste management can be a tricky business for hazardous waste generators and transporters and owners or operators of hazardous waste treatment, storage, and disposal facilities (TSDFs).

Hazardous waste, chemical inventory, e-manifest, warehouse

wavebreakmedia / Shutterstock.com

Among other requirements, the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and the EPA’s implementing regulations require these entities to use the uniform hazardous waste manifest (EPA Form 8700-22) and, if needed, the continuation sheet (EPA Form 8700-22A) for both interstate and intrastate transportation. The forms and instructions for completing them are available here, but you may have a few questions about e-manifesting; what is this program, and what are your options?

The Program at a Glance

The e-Manifest Program was established by Congress in 2012 to replace paper manifests and was implemented through a 2014 final rule from the EPA. The difficulty of switching from paper to electronic manifests (including security and operational costs) was discussed, but the potential benefits were deemed to outweigh the concerns. These benefits include: one-stop manifest reporting, more effective inspection and enforcement by regulators, nearly real-time shipment tracking services, and consolidation of duplicative federal and state systems.

Initial user fees were announced in January 2018, and the e-Manifest Program became operational on June 30, 2018. In the 2018 rule, EPA estimated that approximately 160,000 entities in at least 45 industries under federal and state jurisdiction generate 3 million to 5 million domestic manifests each year.

Options for Filing—and Fees

There are several options for generators, transporters, owners, and/or operators to file manifests; these are fully electronic, hybrid, and paper submission options. Following is a summary of the various options:

Fully Electronic. All handlers must be registered for e-Manifest.

  • Manifest is created electronically in e-Manifest.
  • Manifest is signed electronically by all handlers.
  • Manifest in e-Manifest is considered complete when receiving facility signs electronically.

Hybrid. Initial and subsequent transporters and receiving facilities must be registered.

  • Manifest is created electronically in e-Manifest.
  • Generators and transporters print out manifest from e-Manifest and sign paper copy of the electronic manifest.
  • Initial transporter, any subsequent transporter, and receiving facility electronically sign manifest.
  • Manifest is submitted into e-Manifest and is considered complete when receiving facility signs electronically.

Paper

Data + Image. Receiving facility must register at least one site manager to upload data + image and pay invoices.

  • Paper manifest form is used.
  • All handlers sign a paper copy of the manifest.
  • Receiving facility uploads a data file along with a scanned image of the top copy paper manifest.
  • Receiving facility electronically signs in e-Manifest to submit manifest data and images to the EPA.
  • The EPA validates that the scanned image and data file contain the same information.

Scanned Image. Receiving facility must register at least one site manager to upload scanned images and pay invoices.

  • Paper manifest form is used.
  • All handlers sign a paper copy of the manifest.
  • Receiving facility uploads a scanned image of the manifest through e-Manifest.
  • Receiving facility electronically signs in e-Manifest to submit manifest images to the EPA.
  • The EPA enters data from the accompanying scanned image.

Mailed Paper. Receiving facility must register at least one site manager to pay invoices.

  • Paper manifest form is used.
  • All handlers sign a paper copy of the manifest.
  • Receiving facility mails paper manifest (and continuation sheets) to:
    EPA e-Manifest PPC
    14295 Park Meadow Drive, 5th Floor
    Chantilly, VA 20151
  • The EPA scans paper manifest and enters corresponding data. Image and data are uploaded into the system.

EPA is nudging employers towards electronic manifesting in a variety of ways. On June 30, 2021, the Agency will no longer accept paper manifests submitted via mail. As a further disincentive for paper filing, user fees for fiscal years (FY) 2020 and 2021 (fee per manifest) are higher for options using paper (see below).

e-Manifest fee table

The ongoing switch to digital provides mutual benefits to EPA and employers alike—the Agency estimates that the e-Manifest Program will save the regulated community $66 million each year. With the right environmental compliance solutions, you can ensure that your company is keeping pace with change.