Hazardous Waste Management by Small-Quantity Generators

Chlorinated Solvents in the Dry Cleaning Industry

by Kathleen A. Wolf, Christopher W. Myers


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This report provides an assessment of chlorinated solvent use and waste generation in the dry cleaning industry. It summarizes the waste management practices in dry cleaning and extends them to other small-quantity generators (SQGs) of hazardous wastes. It focuses on alternatives to land disposal for a class of chemicals called chlorinated solvents, which pose a range of environmental and health problems, and are used widely in a variety of industries. The findings suggest that private sector recycling firms have already brought most retail and industrial dry cleaners into compliance with hazardous waste regulations. Other SQGs in diverse industries generate a substantial amount of solvent waste, however. Some of this waste is currently managed through reclamation, but the available data indicate that the potential for reclamation is much higher.

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