Oregon DEQ approves actions to relax hazardous waste removal rules

The Oregon Department Quality Commission is approving two actions designed to help speed in removing debris from residences destroyed by wildfires in Oregon.

Posted: Oct 9, 2020 2:20 PM

SOUTHERN OREGON--- The Oregon Department Quality Commission is approving two actions designed to help speed in removing debris from residences destroyed by wildfires in Oregon. 

The approval will relax some requirements for the handling of ash and debris that may contain asbestos and authorize temporary stockpiling of debris prior to permanent disposal in landfills.

Eight Oregon counties have entered partnerships with Oregon's Debris Management Task Force to asses and clear household hazardous waste from fire-damged properties at no cost to property owner. 

According to the Oregon DEQ, The first step in the process of wildfire cleanup is free removal of household hazardous waste. The next step is ash and debris removal. After those two steps are completed, communities will be ready to begin rebuilding. 

Remember, property owners must sign an access agreement, called a Right of Entry form, by Oct. 16 to allow cleanup crews onto their property to remove household hazardous waste. Links to each county’s Right of Entry forms are available at wildfire.oregon.gov/cleanup. There is also a Right of Entry helpline with assistance available in English and Spanish at 1-682-800-5737.

The Oregon DEQ says "Action by the Oregon Environmental Quality Commission is aimed at speeding cleanup for property owners who have suffered significant loss while maintaining protections for public health.

Asbestos – DEQ strongly urges people whose properties were burned not to undertake cleanup themselves because of the risks posed by asbestos and other hazardous materials. Property owners can participate in the federal and state cleanup of hazardous materials by signing Right of Entry forms, available through their county government.

The following rule changes apply for those who decide to hire a licensed asbestos abatement contractor to clean their properties:

• Fees and notification requirements are suspended; commercial and larger residential projects requiring demolition must still submit a notification.

• Open accumulation of asbestos debris is allowed.

• No requirement for negative-pressure enclosure of the debris.

• Use of mechanical equipment is allowed.

The changes also allow residential property owners with four or fewer dwelling units to do the work themselves as long as certain conditions are met. These include:

• Use of any paid labor is not allowed.

• The material must be adequately wetted to prevent airborne particles.

• All packaging, transport and disposal rules still apply.

Solid waste – The temporary rules approved by the Environmental Quality Commission allow short-term authorization to stockpile wildfire debris with letters of authorization issued by DEQ. They also temporarily waive permit fees. Solid waste facilities that store or accept burned debris do not need to submit a land use compatibility statement (LUCS).

Given the large volume of debris caused by the devastating 2020 wildfires, the suspension of these requirements is needed to allow waste staging areas to be set up quickly to store and manage the debris for proper disposal. The rapid authorization of these staging areas will allow waste to be removed from locations where it poses a greater risk to human health and the environment."

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 191774

Reported Deaths: 2533
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah38030585
Washington25362229
Marion21859306
Clackamas17262209
Lane12861146
Jackson10739135
Deschutes875974
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Linn485267
Yamhill442875
Klamath433061
Polk371352
Malheur350461
Josephine331669
Douglas323170
Benton306019
Jefferson217434
Coos205033
Columbia172726
Union144423
Lincoln137120
Wasco137128
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Morrow110115
Crook107620
Clatsop9768
Baker94714
Curry6459
Tillamook6423
Grant5065
Lake4447
Harney3418
Wallowa1825
Gilliam621
Sherman581
Wheeler281
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California Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 3760303

Reported Deaths: 62334
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles123582824026
Riverside2991734588
San Bernardino2966554707
San Diego2781823725
Orange2708005008
Santa Clara1189322086
Kern1090521373
Sacramento1044911676
Fresno1017291682
Alameda876371546
Ventura809051011
San Joaquin731741391
Contra Costa68638806
Stanislaus620081056
Tulare49579839
Monterey43595382
San Mateo41903568
San Francisco36669543
Santa Barbara34323456
Solano32864250
Merced31821459
Sonoma30002318
Imperial28388722
Kings22977246
Placer22610291
San Luis Obispo21293260
Madera16444242
Santa Cruz16238206
Marin14040228
Yolo13897209
Shasta12110226
Butte11985199
El Dorado10141113
Napa985781
Sutter9421111
Yuba625346
San Benito605663
Lassen570124
Tehama556362
Nevada473675
Tuolumne412966
Mendocino407249
Humboldt398040
Amador365547
Lake347143
Glenn238225
Colusa223216
Siskiyou220523
Calaveras212553
Inyo142838
Del Norte13808
Mono12804
Plumas7106
Modoc4984
Mariposa4477
Trinity4005
Sierra1120
Alpine880
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