Waste Classification Testing
Waste Acceptance Criteria Testing Services
A common misconception in the industry is that Waste Acceptance Criteria (WAC) testing is used to classify waste soil, it is not.
WAC testing is used to determine how a waste will behave once it’s buried in a landfill, primarily by analysis of leachates derived from that waste. So a WAC test will tell you whether it will meet the acceptance criteria of the landfill site but this is actually a separate issue from waste classification.
Waste is classified as non-hazardous or hazardous on the basis of a standard range of inorganic and organic chemical analysis, the standard list of determinants we use as a minimum to classify soil based material are as follows;
• Metals (total) As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb, Hg, Ni, Se, Zn
• Chromium (III & VI), pH, PAH (EPA16), PAH (Oil8), TPH (C5-C10, C10-C25, C25-C40)
This suite forms the basis of any waste classification. These are key contaminants without which no classification would be complete. Additional contaminants can be added if required based on type of site, site history or any other suspected contaminates that may be encountered on site.
Hazardous or Non-Hazardours Classified Waste
Once you have determined whether your waste is hazardous or non-hazardous you then have to establish an appropriate disposal route, which is when WAC testing may be required if it is necessary to remove the material to a landfill site.
In excess of 95% of Ecofficiency waste soils are removed to recycling and treatment facilities across the UK to avoid landfill and the expensive landfill tax escalator. In this instance WAC testing is unnecessary. In the event that off-site recycling options are limited due to certain contaminants (E.g. asbestos) then landfill would be the final option. If you’re intending to send your waste to a landfill site then they will require WAC analysis to determine whether it meets the restrictions of the site’s licence and how they should handle this material once it’s through their gate. Soil based materials that are considered clean non-hazardous with no sign of elevated contamination cannot technically be classed as inert without a WAC analysis. However, recycling centres and restoration sites will derive their rates based on the standard waste classification suite and equivalent inert rates will be provided.