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Regulations for businesses generating small quantities of hazardous waste.

If your business generates small amounts of hazardous waste, you may be eligible to dispose of hazardous waste at a designated Metro facility via the Conditionally Exempt Generator program.

A number of private companies provide hazardous waste management services to businesses and organizations in the metro area. Metro also collects hazardous waste from businesses that generate small amounts of hazardous waste – known as conditionally exempt generators (CEGs). If your business or organization is a CEG, you may be eligible to participate in the program, co-sponsored by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality.

Does your painting or mold remediation company generate hazardous waste?

If you use products that are corrosive, ignitable, reactive or toxic, then you probably generate hazardous waste.  The following are examples of materials that should not be thrown in the trash. Some materials may be regulated by DEQ as hazardous waste; all can be accepted at Metro’s hazardous waste facilities.

  • laboratory chemicals
  • paints, thinners and solvents
  • antimicrobial agents, mildicides
  • cleaners
  • aerosol spray products.

The following are examples of materials that Metro does not accept through the CEG program:

  • compressed cylinders
  • biological waste
  • radioactive waste
  • explosives
  • asbestos
  • regulated PCB material.

How should you dispose of hazardous waste?

Hazardous wastes should always be disposed of through a designated hazardous waste management or recycling facility. Hazardous waste should not be disposed with ordinary garbage, or poured into the sewer system, down storm drains or onto the ground. Improper disposal of such wastes also violates Oregon law. If disposed of improperly, it can harm the environment, human beings and wildlife. Proper hazardous waste management makes good business sense, too, and can reduce your economic liability for cleanups, reduce your insurance costs and minimize employee exposures.

Is your business a CEG?

Your organization is considered a CEG if it:

  • produces less than 220 pounds of hazardous waste each month (approximately 25 gallons of liquid waste with a weight comparable to water)
  • produces less than 2.2 pounds of acutely hazardous waste each month
  • stores no more than 2,200 pounds of hazardous waste on site.

To determine whether you may be considered a CEG, estimate the waste you produce each month and inventory the hazardous waste you currently have on hand.

Remember, your paint rinse water may be considered hazardous.  If so, even a small operation can quickly exceed the monthly limit of 220 lbs.

If your organization generates less than 220 pounds of hazardous waste per month and stores less than 2,200 pounds on site, you qualify as a CEG and may be eligible for this program. To participate, you must complete the registration process.

Do your best to remain beneath this limit.  The labor and management costs associated with operating your company as a medium or large quantity generator can quickly exceed the benefit of working with these products.

If your organization generates more than 220 pounds of hazardous waste per month or stores more than 2,200 pounds on site, you must manage your waste according to stricter regulation and are not eligible for this program. For more information, call the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality at 503-229-5913.

Be sure that unwanted materials are actually wastes

Unused products that are still in good condition may be given to others. Any products given to other users are not considered waste, and do not count toward your total for generator status determination. If you don’t know anyone who can use your unwanted products, Industrial Materials Exchange (IMEX) may be able to help. Located in the Seattle area, IMEX provides a listing service for a variety of unwanted chemicals and other materials throughout the Northwest. For more information, call IMEX at 206-296-4899 or visit their site…Visit the IMEX site

Registering for the program

Call Metro Recycling Information at 503-234-3000 and request a CEG application and inventory form. You can also download the form and mail it in…More

Scheduling an appointment

After your application has been reviewed, a Metro employee will call you to provide a disposal cost estimate based on the information you submitted and schedule a disposal appointment for you.

Disposal fees

Disposal fees are based on the type and quantity of waste you bring to the facility. They range from $1 to $16 per gallon. Prior to your appointment, a Metro employee will categorize your waste and give you a final disposal fee based on the inventory you submitted. You will be charged based on the quantity of waste present or by the volume of the container, depending upon how the material is processed or packaged for disposal.


If you wish to be billed for the disposal fee, you must complete a credit application and return it to Metro at least 15 days before your disposal appointment. If you request a CEG packet from Metro Recycling Information, a credit application is included. If you have not been approved as a credit customer, the full disposal fee must be paid when waste is accepted at the facility. Metro accepts cash, personal checks with check guarantee cards, business checks and VISA or MasterCard. To request a credit application call Metro’s accounting department at 503-797-1577 or download a credit application…

For more information about what materials are considered hazardous waste, call DEQ at 503-229-5263.