Text: H.R.5359 — 101st Congress (1989-1990)All Information (Except Text)

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HR 5359 IH
101st CONGRESS
2d Session
 H. R. 5359
To amend the Solid Waste Disposal Act to provide management standards and
recycling requirements for spent lead-acid batteries.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
July 24, 1990
Mr. TORRES (for himself, Mr. HOCHBRUECKNER, Mr. ANDERSON, Mr. BATES,
Mr. BEILENSON, Mr. BERMAN, Mr. BONIOR, Mr. BROWN of California, Mr. BRYANT,
Mr. CONDIT, Mr. COYNE, Mr. DE LA GARZA, Mr. DYMALLY, Mr. EDWARDS of California,
Mr. FAUNTROY, Mr. FAZIO, Mr. GAYDOS, Mr. HAWKINS, Mr. HAYES of Illinois,
Mr. HORTON, Ms. KAPTUR, Mr. LEWIS of Georgia, Mr. MARKEY, Mr. MILLER of
California, Mr. NAGLE, Mr. OWENS of Utah, Mr. PALLONE, Ms. PELOSI, Mr. RANGEL,
Mr. RICHARDSON, Mr. ROYBAL, Ms. SCHNEIDER, Mrs. SCHROEDER, Mr. SIKORSKI,
Mr. TOWNS, Mr. WALSH, and Mr. WOLPE) introduced the following bill; which
was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce
A BILL
To amend the Solid Waste Disposal Act to provide management standards and
recycling requirements for spent lead-acid batteries.
  Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United
  States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
  This Act may be cited as the `Lead Battery Recycling Incentives Act'.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
  The Congress finds the following:
  (1) Consumption of lead in the United States has declined since the early
  1970s, when lead was widely used in paints and as a gasoline additive, but
  substantial amounts of lead continue to be used in a variety of products. The
  most important of these is lead-acid batteries, used primarily in motor
  vehicles. In 1987, batteries accounted for 78 percent of all the lead used
  in manufacturing in the United States.
  (2) The lead in batteries can be easily recycled, but each year a substantial
  amount of lead is released to the environment when batteries are disposed
  of in landfills and municipal incinerators. According to the Environmental
  Protection Agency, 138,000 tons of lead were discarded in batteries in 1986
  (65 percent of total lead discards). Lead discarded in batteries increased
  64 percent between 1970 and 1986, and the Environmental Protection Agency
  projects a further increase of 31 percent by the year 2000.
  (3) Since lead is an element that cannot be destroyed, its continued
  release in any amount leads to increased amounts of lead in the environment.
  (4) An increase in environmental lead loadings is harmful to health and the
  environment. Because lead accumulates in body tissues, exposure to lead can
  result in a variety of health problems. Even low levels of exposure can lead
  to neurochemical changes, altered behavior, or learning disabilities. Higher
  levels of exposure can induce serious health effects, including permanent
  damage to the central nervous system. Effects on the brain and nervous
  systems have been observed at blood lead levels once considered safe.
  (5) Children are especially susceptible to the adverse consequences of
  lead in the environment. Those with high blood levels are three times
  more likely to have a verbal IQ score below 80. The detrimental impact on
  cognitive development will continue into early adulthood.
  (6) General population exposures and blood lead levels remain near recently
  identified medical effect levels. The Environmental Protection Agency's
  Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee has recommended that the maximum
  acceptable blood lead level for children be lowered from 25 mg/dl to 10-15
  mg/dl. Approximately three to four million young children in the Nation's
  cities suffer blood lead levels higher than 15 mg/dl.
  (7) Exposures to lead are higher for populations around certain lead smelting
  facilities, populations in urban areas with heavily contaminated soils,
  and populations living in housing with lead-based paint or water delivery
  systems that contain lead. Chronic low-level exposure can be most damaging
  to these populations.
  (8) Federal, State, and local programs to reduce emissions of lead have
  made significant progress but have not eliminated human and environmental
  exposure to lead. Air emissions from sources other than transportation
  have in fact remained relatively steady since 1983.
  (9) Solid waste contributed 32 percent of the 8,100 metric tons of lead
  emitted in the United States in 1987, largely because of incineration of
  batteries in municipal solid waste.
  (10) Only about 10 percent of municipal solid waste (MSW) was incinerated in
  1987, but the percentage is growing rapidly. The Environmental Protection
  Agency projects that if facilities that are now under construction are
  completed, by the year 1992, 28 percent of MSW will be burned. The dramatic
  increase in incineration will greatly contribute to the amount of lead
  emitted. It will also increase lead disposed of in incinerator ash, which,
  when landfilled, may leach into groundwater.
SEC. 3. SPENT LEAD-ACID BATTERY MANAGEMENT REQUIREMENTS.
  (a) MANAGEMENT STANDARDS FOR SPENT LEAD-ACID BATTERIES- (1) Subtitle C of
  the Solid Waste Disposal Act is amended by adding at the end the following
  new section:
`SEC. 3021. MANAGEMENT STANDARDS FOR SPENT LEAD-ACID BATTERIES.
  `(a) IN GENERAL- (1) Not later than 24 months after the date of the enactment
  of the Lead Battery Recycling Incentives Act, the Administrator shall
  promulgate regulations, in accordance with this section, for persons who
  generate, transport, store, recycle, or dispose of spent lead-acid batteries.
  `(2) Such regulations shall include the recordkeeping requirements described
  in subsections (b)(4) and (c)(3), including a standard form that such
  persons may use for carrying out applicable recordkeeping requirements.
  `(3) In developing such regulations, the Administrator shall conduct
  an analysis of the economic impact of the regulations on the recycling
  industry. The Administrator shall ensure that such regulations do not
  discourage the recovery or recycling of spent lead-acid batteries,
  consistent with the protection of human health and the environment.
  `(b) GENERATORS-
  `(1) IN GENERAL- The Administrator shall promulgate regulations establishing
  requirements for generators of spent lead-acid batteries as necessary to
  protect human health and the environment. Such regulations shall cover
  the storage and transfer of batteries, recordkeeping, and such other
  matters as the Administrator considers appropriate, including protection
  against spillage and leakage of acid. In promulgating such regulations,
  the Administrator shall take into account the effect of such regulations
  on environmentally acceptable types of lead-acid battery recycling and
  the effect of such regulations on small quantity generators and generators
  which are small businesses (as defined by the Administrator).
  `(2) STORAGE- The regulations shall require the following with respect to
  storage of spent lead-acid batteries:
  `(A) No spent lead-acid batteries may be stored on unprotected soil or in
  a manner which allows storm water to pass over them.
  `(B) No spent lead-acid batteries may be stored for more than a certain
  period of time, as defined in the regulations.
  `(3) TRANSFER- The regulations shall require that a generator must transfer
  spent lead-acid batteries to one of the following:
  `(A) A spent lead-acid battery disposal facility with a permit under
  section 3005.
  `(B) A secondary lead smelter.
  `(C) A spent lead-acid battery recycling facility which recovers lead from
  spent lead-acid batteries and which has a permit under section 3005.
  `(D) A battery transporter with a contract to deliver the batteries to
  any facility described in subparagraph (A), (B), or (C).
  `(4) RECORDKEEPING- The regulations shall require that a generator of
  spent lead-acid batteries shall keep a record, for a period of at least
  3 years, with respect to each transfer of batteries. The record shall
  contain the following:
  `(A) The date and quantity of batteries transferred.
  `(B) The destination of the batteries transferred.
  `(C) A certification from either the transporter of the batteries, or
  from the recycling facility, disposal facility, or smelter to which the
  battery is being transferred, that such facility or smelter has a permit
  as required under this section or is exempt as provided under this section.
  `(5) RETAILER REQUIREMENTS- The regulations shall require that a person
  who sells, or offers for sale, lead-acid batteries shall accept from
  customers, if offered by customers, used lead-acid batteries of the same
  type as the batteries sold and in a quantity approximately equal to the
  number of batteries sold. The used lead-acid batteries shall be accepted
  at the place where lead-acid batteries are offered for sale.
  `(c) TRANSPORTERS-
  `(1) IN GENERAL- The Administrator shall promulgate regulations establishing
  requirements for transporters of spent lead-acid batteries as necessary to
  protect human health and the environment. Such regulations shall cover
  recordkeeping and such other matters as the Administrator considers
  appropriate, including protection against spillage and leakage of acid.
  `(2) IDENTIFICATION NUMBER- The regulations shall require that each
  transporter acquire an identification number from the Environmental
  Protection Agency or from a State enforcing this section.
  `(3) RECORDKEEPING- The regulations shall require that a transporter of
  spent lead-acid batteries shall keep a record, for a period of not less
  than 3 years, with respect to each shipment of spent lead-acid batteries,
  containing the following:
  `(A) The date of receipt, origin, and quantity of spent lead-acid batteries
  transported.
  `(B) The destination of the batteries transported.
  `(C) A certification from the disposal facility or smelter to which the
  batteries are being transported that such facility or smelter has a permit
  as required under this section or is exempt as provided under this section.
  `(D) A certification from the disposal facility or smelter to which the
  batteries are being transported that the facility or smelter actually
  received the quantity of batteries described in subparagraph (A).
  `(d) RECYCLERS-
  `(1) IN GENERAL- The Administrator shall promulgate regulations establishing
  requirements for recyclers of spent lead-acid batteries as necessary to
  protect human health and the environment. Such regulations shall cover
  the matters described in this subsection and such other matters as the
  Administrator considers appropriate, including protection against spillage
  and leakage of acid.
  `(2) MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS- The regulations shall include requirements
  respecting the following:
  `(A) Maintaining records of all spent lead-acid batteries governed under
  provisions of this section and the manner in which such batteries were
  managed under this section. Such records at a minimum shall include, with
  respect to each shipment of spent lead-acid batteries, the date of receipt
  and quantity of batteries received, the name and address of the generator
  and transporter of such batteries, and the certification described in
  subparagraph (C) of subsection (c)(3).
  `(B) Reporting, monitoring, and inspection.
  `(C) Recycling of all batteries received by the recycling facility in
  accordance with the requirements established by the Administrator.
  `(D) The control of air emissions from secondary lead smelters as may
  be necessary.
  `(E) Control of spillage and leakage of acid from spent lead-acid batteries.
  `(F) Management practices for recycling battery cases from spent lead-acid
  batteries.
  `(G) Contingency plans for effective action to minimize potential
  environmental damage caused by a mishap at any recycling facility.
  `(H) Management of slag or any other secondary materials resulting from
  the secondary lead smelting process as may be necessary.
  `(I) Compliance with such requirements for corrective action and financial
  responsibility as may be necessary or desirable.
  `(e) RETENTION OF STATE AUTHORITY- Nothing in this section shall prohibit
  any State or political subdivision thereof from imposing any requirement
  regarding spent lead-acid batteries which is more stringent than any
  requirement established by this section.
  `(f) SPENT LEAD-ACID BATTERY RECYCLING EDUCATION- (1) The Administrator
  shall implement education activities and programs to inform the public and
  small businesses about the environmental and safety hazards associated with
  improper handling and disposal of spent lead-acid batteries, including the
  benefits derived from legitimate battery recycling. In carrying out his
  responsibilities under this subsection, the Administrator shall consult and
  assist the heads of Federal departments and agencies, appropriate State and
  local government agencies, educational institutions, trade associations,
  and other representatives of private sector organizations.
  `(2) There is authorized to be appropriated to the Administrator not more
  than $150,000 for fiscal year 1990, and not more than $175,000 for each
  of fiscal years 1991 and 1992 to carry out the purposes and requirements
  of this subsection.
  `(g) APPLICABILITY- (1) This section applies to batteries which are
  transported to or managed by either a spent lead-acid battery recycling
  facility, a secondary lead smelter, or any facility that prepares batteries
  for recycling by means of exposing the lead to the atmosphere.
  `(h) DEFINITIONS- For purposes of this section:
  `(1) The term `generator' means a commercial entity that collects, stores,
  accumulates, or otherwise generates spent lead-acid batteries. The term
  does not include an individual who removes a battery from an automobile
  or light-duty truck.
  `(2) The terms `lead-acid battery', `secondary lead smelter', and `spent
  lead-acid battery recycling facility' have the meanings given those terms
  by section 3022(e).'.
  (2) The table of contents for subtitle C (contained in section 1001)
  is amended by adding at the end the following:
`Sec. 3021. Management standards for spent lead-acid batteries.'.
SEC. 4. SPENT LEAD-ACID BATTERY RECYCLING REQUIREMENTS.
  (a) IN GENERAL- (1) Subtitle C of the Solid Waste Disposal Act is further
  amended by inserting after section 3021 the following new section:
`SEC. 3022. RECYCLING REQUIREMENTS FOR SPENT LEAD-ACID BATTERIES.
  `(a) GENERAL REQUIREMENT- (1) During the period beginning not later than
  24 months after the date of the enactment of the Lead Battery Recycling
  Incentives Act and ending 10 years after such date, a producer or importer
  of lead-acid batteries each year shall recycle, using a method described in
  paragraph (2), an amount, by weight, of spent lead generated from lead-acid
  batteries equal to at least that amount of lead determined by--
  `(A) multiplying the amount, by weight, of lead in lead-acid batteries
  produced for domestic use or consumption or imported that year by such
  person, by
  `(B) the recycling percentage established by the Administrator under
  subsection (b).
  `(2) A producer or importer of lead-acid batteries may comply with this
  subsection--
  `(A) by reclaiming lead from spent lead-acid batteries and using such
  lead in the production of new lead-acid batteries (in compliance with the
  recycling requirements of section 3021 and regulations promulgated pursuant
  to such section);
  `(B) by purchasing from secondary lead smelters lead reclaimed from spent
  lead-acid batteries for purposes of producing new lead-acid batteries or
  manufacturing lead shielding by introducing such reclaimed lead into new
  batteries or shielding; or
  `(C) by purchasing recycling credits from another producer or importer of
  lead-acid batteries under the recycling credit system established pursuant
  to subsection (c).
  `(3) A producer or importer of new lead-acid batteries shall submit to the
  Administrator, under regulations promulgated by the Administrator, a report
  on the amount, by weight, of virgin and secondary lead used in new lead-acid
  batteries produced or imported in each calendar year by such person. The
  report shall be submitted at least once a year, but the Administrator
  also may require such interim reports under this paragraph as he considers
  necessary. The Administrator shall promulgate a methodology for determining
  the amount of lead for purposes of complying with this subsection.
  `(b) RECYCLING PERCENTAGE- The Administrator each year shall establish a
  recycling percentage for use under subsection (a). The percentage applicable
  during the first year that the requirement established by subsection (a)
  is in effect shall be a percentage that is 2 percentage points higher than
  the recycling rate for spent lead used in lead-acid batteries that exists
  on the date of the enactment of this section. Such recycling rate shall
  be determined by using data for 1990 or the most recent year for which
  data are available. For each of the 10 years thereafter, the recycling
  percentage shall be an additional 2 percentage points higher than the
  percentage of the previous year. Such recycling percentage shall go into
  effect automatically and shall be published in the Federal Register. If
  the rate exceeds 95 percent, the Administrator may waive or reduce the 2
  percent increase which would otherwise be required.
  `(c) CREDIT SYSTEM FOR RECYCLING SPENT LEAD-ACID BATTERIES- (1) Not
  later than 24 months after the date of the enactment of the Lead Battery
  Recycling Incentives Act, the Administrator shall promulgate regulations
  to establish a system under which (A) a producer or importer of lead-acid
  batteries may create credits for any amount of spent lead-acid batteries
  recycled that is greater than the amount of such batteries required to
  be recycled by the producer or importer under subsection (a), and (B)
  producers or importers of new lead-acid batteries may purchase such
  recycling credits from such recyclers, for purposes of complying with
  subsection (a). No person may create such credits, and no producer or
  importer of new lead-acid batteries may purchase such credits, except
  in accordance with this subsection and the regulations promulgated under
  this subsection. In developing the regulations, the Administrator shall,
  to the maximum extent feasible, allow for the use of records kept in the
  ordinary course of business or other approaches that facilitate the simple,
  rapid generation and exchange of credits without a case-by-case approval.
  `(2) At a minimum, the regulations under paragraph (1) shall include the
  following requirements:
  `(A) The owner or operator of any spent lead-acid battery recycling facility
  or secondary lead smelter shall keep receipts issued by any transporters
  who take delivery of the spent batteries. The receipts shall be kept for
  at least 3 years and shall contain such information as the Administrator
  deems appropriate. The owner or operator shall show such receipts to the
  Administrator or to any State enforcing this section upon demand.
  `(B) Any person who transports spent lead-acid batteries to a secondary
  lead smelter, by truck or other means, shall obtain an identification
  number from the Administrator. Such transporters shall issue receipts
  (as described in subparagraph (A)) to the owners or operators of spent
  lead-acid battery recycling facilities or secondary lead smelters.
  `(C) A producer or importer of lead-acid batteries is the only person who
  may create a recycling credit for the recycling credit system.
  `(D) The owner or operator of a secondary lead smelter shall certify to
  the Administrator that the lead being reclaimed for purposes of being sold
  to producers or importers of lead-acid batteries is the product of spent
  lead-acid batteries or such other materials that the administrator shall
  determine by regulations.
  `(E) Effective 3 years after the credit system goes into effect, the owner or
  operator of a secondary lead smelter shall certify to the Administrator that
  the smelter is in compliance with all applicable environmental and safety
  laws, including the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, the Occupational
  Safety and Health Act, and this Act.
  `(F) Any lead proposed to be reclaimed by a secondary lead smelter for
  the purpose of being sold to a producer or importer of lead-acid batteries
  shall come from an owner or operator of spent lead-acid battery recycling
  facility or from a transporter with an identification number.
  `(G) The records that a secondary lead smelter must keep are at least
  the following:
  `(i) The delivery receipts given by transporters of batteries (as described
  in subparagraph (A)). Such records shall be kept for at least 3 years.
  `(ii) A record of the amount, by weight, of spent lead-acid batteries
  received for reclamation of lead.
  `(iii) A record of the quantities of reclaimed lead sold or otherwise
  distributed in commerce and the destinations of reclaimed lead. Part of
  such record shall be a record of the quantities of reclaimed lead sold
  to producers or importers of new lead-acid batteries for the purpose of
  complying with subsection (a).
  `(H) Each year a producer or importer of new lead-acid batteries shall keep
  records of the quantity of new lead-acid batteries produced or imported,
  the amount of lead reclaimed from spent lead-acid batteries to comply
  with subsection (a), the amount of reclaimed lead purchased to comply
  with subsection (a), the amount of recycling credits purchased (including
  the names of producers or importers of lead-acid batteries from whom the
  credits were purchased and the dates of the purchases), the price paid for
  the credits, and the amount (if any) of recycling credits sold or carried
  over from previous years. The regulations shall allow for a 2-year carryover
  of credits.
  `(3) The Administrator may include such other requirements in the regulations
  under paragraph (1) with respect to methods for auditing compliance with
  the system, enforcement of the system, and qualifications for secondary
  lead smelters, importers, and producers as the Administrator considers
  necessary or appropriate for administering the recycling credit system
  established under this subsection.
  `(d) REPORTS- (1) Not later than 6 years after the date of the enactment of
  the Lead Battery Recycling Incentives Act, the Administrator shall submit
  to Congress an interim report on the implementation of this section. The
  report shall include, at a minimum--
  `(A) a discussion of the effects of the requirements of this section on
  the battery industry, the spent lead-acid battery recycling industry,
  and on the environment; and
  `(B) an evaluation of the level of the recycling percentage under subsection
  (b) and recommendations on whether, and at what rate, the percentage should
  be increased in future years.
  `(2) Not later than 10 years after such date, the Administrator shall submit
  to Congress a final report on the implementation of this section. The report
  shall include an updated version of the discussion and evaluation required
  in the interim report, as well as such other findings and recommendations
  with respect to the implementation of this section as the Administrator
  considers appropriate.
  `(e) DEFINITIONS- For purposes of this section:
  `(1) The term `producer' with respect to batteries means any person who
  manufactures new lead-acid batteries for domestic use. Such production
  does not include the smelting of spent lead-acid batteries.
  `(2) The term `importer' with respect to batteries means any person who
  imports a new lead-acid battery either individually or as part of an
  automobile or other vehicle.
  `(3) The term `recycling credit' means a legal record of a recycling activity
  undertaken in accordance with subsection (c) that represents an amount,
  by weight, of lead recycled for purposes of complying with subsection (a).
  `(4) The term `secondary lead smelter' means a facility which produces
  metallic lead from various forms of lead scrap, including used lead-acid
  batteries. Such a facility also may produce plastic chips that are sent
  for reprocessing.
  `(5) The term `recycling facility' or `spent lead-acid battery recycling
  facility' means a facility that removes or recovers lead from batteries
  in order to return such lead to a secondary lead smelter.
  `(6) The term `lead-acid battery' means any battery that consists of lead
  and sulfuric acid, is used as a power source, and has a capacity of 6
  volts or more.
  `(7) The term `generator of spent lead/acid battery' means a business or
  individual who receives or accumulates spent/lead acid batteries, but does
  not include businesses which expose the contents of the battery. The term
  shall include but not be limited to--
  `(A) Automobile dismantlers.
  `(B) Scrap processors and recyclers.
  `(C) Auto parts and battery retailers.
  `(D) Auto parts and battery wholesalers.
  `(E) Automobile dealerships and sales.
  `(F) Battery distributors and other distributors.
  `(G) Other businesses and individuals who accept spent lead/acid batteries.
  `(f) APPLICABILITY- This section applies to any person who produces or
  imports more than 10,000 pounds of new lead-acid batteries a year.
  `(g) REGULATIONS- The Administrator shall promulgate regulations to implement
  this section not later than 18 months after the date of the enactment of
  the Lead Battery Recycling Incentives Act. If the Administrator fails to
  promulgate such regulations by that date, the recycling percentage under
  subsection (b) shall be 90 percent beginning on the date of enactment and
  continuing until such time as the regulations are promulgated.'.
  (2) The table of contents for subtitle C (contained in section 1001)
  is further amended by adding at the end the following:
`Sec. 3022. Recycling requirements for spent lead-acid batteries.'.