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FAXBACK 13712
9443.1994(06)

CLARIFICATION OF DISCARDED AMMUNITION OF 0.50 CALIBER OR LESS

UNITED STATES ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20460
OFFICE OF SOLID WASTE AND EMERGENCY RESPONSE

November 3, 1994

SUBJECT: Classification of Discarded Ammunition of 0.50
Caliber or Less

FROM: Sonya Sasseville, Chief
Alternative Technology Section (5303W)
Office of Solid Waste

TO: David Neleigh, Chief
New Mexico/Federal Facilities Section (6H-PN)
Region VI

This is in response to your request of June 14, 1994 in which
you ask for a clarification of EPA's policy regarding the disposal
of munitions less than or equal to 0.50 caliber. EPA's policy was
set forth in a June 2, 1988 memorandum on Classification of
Discarded Class C Explosives.

In that June memorandum, EPA stated "To date, only those Class
C explosives identified as off-specification small arms ball
ammunition up to and including 0.50 caliber have been demonstrated
not to be subject to the Subtitle C hazardous waste requirements."
However, EPA did not intend to imply that small arms ball
ammunition could not be regulated for reasons other than
reactivity. The Agency has maintained that small arms ammunition
intended for disposal, up to and including 0.50 caliber, is not
reactive within the meaning of 40 CFR 261.23(a)(6). The sole fact
that small caliber ball ammunition is not reactive does not
necessarily exempt the waste from Subtitle C regulation.
Non-reactive wastes exhibiting another hazardous waste
characteristic would be regulated. For example, certain small
caliber ammunition may fail the TCLP for lead. Generators of
discarded small caliber ammunition must determine whether their
waste exhibits any other hazardous waste characteristics identified
in 261 Subpart C.

Your memo also describes an instance where a waste is disposed
of in a popping furnace "that does not fit the description of an
incinerator and the munitions are less than or equal to 0.50
caliber, then this would not be regulated under Subtitle C ..." You
are correct in that a device treating discarded ball munitions less
than or equal to 0.50 caliber, would not be subject to Subtitle C
regulations, unless the waste fails for another characteristic
rendering it hazardous. However, please note that EPA classifies
"popping furnaces" as incinerators because the process that occurs
in the enclosed unit is controlled flame combustion, as discussed
in the attached July 17, 1987 letter from Bruce Weddle to Jesse
Cabellon.

If you have any questions, please contact Jeffrey Gaines at
(703) 308-8655.

Attachment

cc:Permit Section Chiefs, Regions I-V, and VII-X
Subpart X Permit Writers' Workgroup
Waste Combustion Permit Writers' Workgroup
Frank McAlister, PSPD
Jim Michael, PSPD
Jeffrey Gaines, PSPD