University of Minnesota
Minnesota Technical Assistance Program
http://www.mntap.umn.edu
612.624.1300

Cutting Waste, Compliance Costs

-by Donna Peterson

When calculating the cost of a waste reduction project, don’t leave out savings from reduced environmental compliance costs. Including these savings can help you show the project’s full cost, making the payback more attractive to management.

$8,400 Savings

An eyeglass lens manufacturer in St. Cloud stopped using acetone and methylene chloride. As a result, the company changed its hazardous waste status from LQG to very small quantity generator. The cost of obtaining an air quality permit was eliminated. Lower environmental compliance costs including hazardous waste fees, reporting and training, and applying for a new air permit accounted for 38 percent of its savings. The remaining 62 percent was from reduced new material costs and hazardous waste disposal fees.

$14,200 Savings

A small tanning company in Owatonna implemented a system to reuse its chrome-based tanning solution. The company now meets requirements to change from an LQG to small quantity generator—a projected one-time savings of $2,200. Reusing the solution saves the company about $12,000 per year on raw material purchase costs and hazardous waste disposal fees.

The fact sheet Waste: What is it Really Costing You?, may help you identify costs associated with waste management. Or, call MnTAP at 612.624.1300 for a copy or help with cost savings related to waste reduction projects at your company.

 

This article was originally published in the 2002 Winter issue of the Source.

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