Compliance Promotion Guide on Requirements of PCB Regulations

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FOREWORD

The purpose of this guide is to clarify the requirements set out in the PCB Regulations (Regulations) and help the regulated community better understand them.

This document also answers frequently asked questions from stakeholders regarding technical, compliance or enforcement aspects of the Regulations' requirements.

Not all regulatory requirements are necessarily discussed, and clarification may be provided for only a single aspect or portion of a requirement. As the guide follows the sections outlined in the Regulations, it is useful to first read the related requirement and then the clarifications or comments in the guide.

Keep in mind that this guide cannot be used as a replacement to the Regulations. It is not intended to restate the law or to constitute a binding statement of how the department will exercise discretion in a particular situation. If there is a conflict between the content of this document and the Regulations, the Regulations prevail. Only the Regulations can be used for interpreting, complying with and enforcing the regulatory requirements.

Where in doubt or for any comments on this guide please contact the Waste Reduction and Management Division of Environment Canada at PCBProgram@ec.gc.ca or at 1-819-997-2800 or 1-800-668-6767. Please note that responses provided by the Waste Reduction and Management Division cannot be taken as legal advice. Regulatees must contact their own lawyers to satisfy themselves as to the final interpretation of the law.

For all purposes of interpreting and applying the law, please consult the following documents which are available in public libraries:

  • the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (the Act) as passed by Parliament and published in the annual Statutes of Canada. Information on the Act under which the PCB Regulations are made can also be found under the Acts section of Environment Canada's Website
  • the PCB Regulations, as registered by the Clerk of the Privy Council and also published in the Statutes of Canada. Information on the PCB Regulations can be found on the CEPA Registry section of Environment Canada's Website.

NOTES

  1. Environment Canada verifies the regulated community's compliance with the Regulations in accordance with the Compliance and Enforcement Policy for the Act and the enforcement plan developed for these Regulations. Inspections and investigations may be conducted at any time, without prior notice, with a view to monitoring compliance with the Act and the Regulations. Various punitive measures may be taken for presumed offences, including monetary tickets and prosecution, as set in the Policy.
  2. Regulatees are invited to read the Compliance and Enforcement Policy for the Canadian Environmental Protection Act and Compliance and Enforcement web section.
  3. The use of "province" in the text is intended to include territories.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

NOTES

TABLE OF CONTENT

REQUIREMENTS OF THE PCB REGULATIONS
PART 1 – GENERAL

PART 2 – PROHIBITIONS AND PERMITTED ACTIVITIES
PROHIBITIONS

PERMITTED ACTIVITIES

USE - end of use DATES AND EXTENSION

PART 3 – STORAGE

PART 4 – LABELLING, REPORTS AND RECORDS
LABELLING

REPORTS

RECORDS

PART 5 – REPEALS AND COMING INTO FORCE

RESOURCES
CONTACT
APPENDICES
APPENDIX A – SUMMARY TABLE OF KEY REQUIREMENTS OF PART 2 – PROHIBITIONS AND PERMITTED ACTIVITIES
APPENDIX B – SUMMARY TABLE OF KEY REGULATORY REQUIREMENTS OF PART 2 – PERMITTED ACTIVITIES, PART 3 – STORAGE, PART 4 – LABELLING, REPORTS AND RECORDS FOR

  1. ELECTRICAL CAPACITORS CONTAINING PCBs (other than light ballasts containing PCBs)
  2. LIGHT BALLASTS AND POLE-TOP TRANSFORMERS AND THEIR POLE-TOP AUXILIARY ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT CONTAINING PCBs
  3. CABLES AND PIPELINES CONTAINING PCBs
  4. EQUIPMENT UNDER SECTION 4(1)(d)(i) TO (iii) CONTAINING PCBs

APPENDIX C – SUMMARY TABLE OF KEY REQUIREMENTS FOR PART 3 – STORAGE(sections 18 to 23)
APPENDIX D – SUMMARY TABLE OF KEY REQUIREMENTS OF PART 4 ON REPORTS(sections 33 to 42)


REQUIREMENTS OF THE PCB REGULATIONS

The PCB Regulations and the Regulations Amending the PCB Regulations (Regulations) are made under Part 5 of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (the Act) and apply nationwide. This Act and its regulations are administered by Environment Canada.

All regulatees must comply with the PCB Regulations.

PART 1 – GENERAL

Definitions, section 1, subsection 1(1)

The definitions that apply to the Regulations not only include those set in subsection 1(1), but also those set out in section 3 and subsection 93(2) of the Act. For other words or phrases that are not defined in the Regulations or the Act, the dictionary definition applies.

The following definitions from the Act apply to the Regulations:

"Release" includes discharge, spray, inject, inoculate, abandon, deposit, spill, leak, seep, pour, emit, empty, throw, dump, place and exhaust. (section 3 of the Act)

"Environment" means the components of the Earth and includes

  1. air, land and water;
  2. all layers of the atmosphere;
  3. all organic and inorganic matter and living organisms; and
  4. the interacting natural systems that include components referred to in paragraphs (a) to (c). (section 3 of the Act)

"Sell" includes to offer for sale or lease, have in possession for sale or lease or deliver for sale or lease. (section 3 of the Act)

"Sell" includes, in respect of a substance, the transfer of the physical possession or control of the substance. (subsection 93(2) of the Act). This definition is wide enough to include donations in certain situations.

The word "product" is not defined in the Regulations or the Act. Thus the dictionary definition of this term applies to the Regulations. Iit should be noted that the definition of this word is wide enough to include equipment, a container, substance, liquid, solid, material or waste, etc.

Similarly the word "process" is not defined in the Regulations or the Act. Hence the dictionary definition of this term would apply. The concept of processing includes the dilution, mixing with another substance, incineration, chemical treatment, destruction, collection and consolidation of liquid or solid materials.

Concentration of PCBs, section 1, subsection 1(2)

The Regulations requires that the concentration of PCBs in a solid composed of several matrices be calculated using the mass of the matrix in which the PCBs are located. However in the case of demolition waste containing PCBs, the following considerations can be used:

  • Demolition waste in general is a solid waste composed of several types of material or matrices as referred to in subsection 1(2), porous waste material and non porous waste material.
  • In the situation where porous demolition waste contains PCBs it might be difficult to differentiate the mass of the PCBs from the mass of the porous waste matrix. In that situation the mass of the two matrices, PCBs and porous waste material, could be considered when calculating the concentration of PCBs in the solid waste.
  • In the situation where a non segregated mix of porous and non porous demolition waste material contains PCBs it might be difficult to differentiate the mass of the matrices, PCBs, porous waste material and non porous waste material. In that situation the mass of the matrices could be considered when calculating the concentration of PCBs in the solid waste.

Laboratory analysis for PCBs, section 1, subsection 1(3)

When the concentration and quantity of PCBs in a liquid, solid or any other substance must be determined in order to comply with and apply the Regulations, they are to be determined by a laboratory:

  • accredited in accordance with ISO standards by an accreditation body that is a signatory to the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) Mutual Recognition Agreement.
    • The Standards Council of Canada may accredit any laboratory, in Canada, including in Quebec (please see the list of accredited laboratories)
    • The Canadian Association for Laboratory Accreditation Inc (CALA), formerly known as the Canadian Association for Environmental Analytical Laboratories , may accredit any laboratories in Canada (please see the list of accredited laboratories), or
  • accredited in accordance with ISO standards by Quebec's Ministère du développement durable, de l'environnement et des parcs [Department of sustainable development, environment and parks] for the purposes of Quebec's Environmental Quality Act (Centre d'expertise en analyse environnementale where a list of accredited laboratories)
  • accredited in accordance with the ISO/IEC 17025:2005 entitled General Requirements for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories
  • and for which the scope of accreditation shall include the analytical method used to determine the concentration of PCBs in the matrix in which the PCBs are located.

The laboratory must be accredited specifically for PCB analysis. A laboratory may be accredited for various other types of chemical analysis.

Note that the PCB Regulations do not require PCB analyses to be performed to prove the presence of PCBs or to determine their concentration. For example, relevant information can be used for that purpose such as the manufacturer's nameplate information on a transformer. If it says "Askarel," "Inerteen," "Pyranol," "Pyroclor," or "Insuldur," it is safe to conclude that the transformer in question contains a high concentration of PCBs , higher than 500 mg/kg. These products contain PCB in concentrations of 10,000 to 900,000 mg/kg.

Also, if there are any reasons to suspect the presence of PCBs, the owner may decide to handle the equipment as though it contains PCBs. Laboratory chemical analysis is not required.

Also note that neither the United States Environmental Protection Agency nor Environment Canada has set regulatory limits for PCB-contaminated surfaces (expressed in ug/100 cm2) equivalent to the regulatory limit of 2 mg/kg for the manufacture, export or import of products. Product surfaces (internal and external) must be thoroughly cleaned of all traces of PCBs (non detectable concentration) from the PCB liquid in a concentration of 2 mg/kg or more that these products are contaminated with.

Environment Canada recognizes that detection limits might vary according to the technology and the methodology used. Environment Canada considers a "non detectable concentration" to be the detection limit of a technology and a methodology used in an accredited laboratory and whose scope of accreditation include the analytical method used to determine the concentrations of PCBs in the matrix in which the PCBs are located. As required by section 45, you must keep as documents/ records your analytical results and the comparison with detection limits of accredited methods when they differ.


Sampling PCBs, Section 1, Subsections 1(4) and 1(5)

When the concentration and quantity of PCBs in a liquid, solid or other substance need to be determined to comply with and enforce the Regulations, they are determined using one of the following sampling methods:

For PCBs in a matrix other than bulk solid products referred to in section 13:

A provincially, nationally or internationally recognized sampling method, i.e. a method that is approved for the application of provincial, national or international legislation or that is set out in provincial, national or international legislation, or a method developed and approved by experts in the field and that is available and used provincially, nationally or internationally.

For PCBs in bulk solid products, for the purposes of section 13:

A sampling method set out in either provincial or federal legislation or approved by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) for the application of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act or with the regulations made under that act (US EPA-approved methods).

Application, section 2, subsection 2(1)

The Regulations apply to PCBs and to any products containing any concentration of PCBs. The Regulations were adopted under subsection 93(1) of the Act and therefore applies nationally, including to government and aboriginal operations and lands.

Various regulatory concentration and quantity limits are set in the Regulations, depending on the controlled activity (manufacturing, import, export, offer for sale, sale, processing, use, storage) and the specific situation. The regulatory concentration limits set forth in the Regulations are 500 mg/kg or more, 50 mg/kg or more, 2 mg/kg or more or any concentration.

Non-application, section 2, subsection 2(2)

The requirements of the Regulations regarding the export, import, sale, offer for sale and use of PCBs and products containing PCBs do not apply to activities and situations set in subsection 2(2). However, the Regulations' prohibition on the release of PCBs into the environment and related requirements apply at all times to those activities and situations.


Non-application - export and import, section 2, subsection 2(2)

The Export and Import of Hazardous Waste and Hazardous Recyclable Material Regulations (EIHWHRMR) and the PCB Waste Export Regulations, 1996, are two regulations that apply to the export and import of hazardous waste and hazardous recyclable materials containing PCBs. The PCB Regulationsalso cover PCB export and import but for PCBs other than those found in hazardous wastes and hazardous recyclable materials that are controlled by these two regulations.

Concentration of less than 2 mg/kg

Any PCB-containing waste or equipment that has been decontaminated to a concentration of less than 2 mg/kg is not subject to any of the import and export requirements of the above-mentioned regulations. However, U.S. legislation requires that waste and products exported to the U.S. (e.g., a decontaminated transformer) be totally cleaned (surfaces cleaned and core and fluid replaced) and free of detectable traces of PCBs in order to be exported. Before PCBs are exported, the receiving country's current legal requirements should be verified and complied with.

Concentration of at least 2 mg/kg but less than 50 mg/kg

Pursuant to section 6 of the PCB Regulations, it is prohibited to export or import waste containing PCBs in a concentration of 2 mg/kg or more but less than 50 mg/kg, for either recycling or disposal.

Concentration of 50 mg/kg or more

For waste disposal

Such waste or equipment may be exported only to the United States and only for disposal, according to the PCB Waste Export Regulations, 1996, with a permit. The EIHWHRMR allows PCB wastes to be imported from the U.S. and elsewhere for disposal with a permit issued under the EIHWHRMR.

For waste recycling

Pursuant to the PCB Waste Export Regulations, 1996, the export of such waste or equipment is prohibited. However, the EIHWHRMR allows the import of such material with a permit. The recycling facility in Canada must also comply with section 12 and remove/destroy all PCBs before processing the material.

Sale of property, section 3

The Regulations do not prevent the sale of movables or immovables containing PCBs or products containing PCBs in the three situations set forth in section 3.

The Regulations do not prevent the sale of movables or immovables included in the sale of a business. Movable or personal property includes consumer products, while immovable or real property includes land, buildings and facilities forming parts of these.

The Regulations do not prevent the sale of real property where equipment or products containing PCBs are an integral part of the real property. For example, a manufacturing facility is allowed to be sold with its electrical equipment containing PCBs which is required for its manufacturing activities only if the equipment containing PCBs remains in place and continues to be used for the said manufacturing activities and subject to end-of-use and storage deadlines.


Compliance, section 4

Persons subject to the Regulations include those who own PCBs, those who use, process, store, export or import PCBs or products containing PCBs, owners and operators of recycling, processing or destruction facilities for PCBs or products containing PCBs, owners and operators of waste management companies for waste oils or other wastes containing PCBs.

All such persons must comply with the activities that are prohibited and allowed under the Regulations. However, owners of PCBs of any concentration are ultimately responsible for ensuring that all regulatory requirements regarding their PCBs are respected.

The Regulations prohibit owners of PCBs at a concentration of 50 mg/kg or more from selling them unless authorized by the Regulations. They are thus responsible for the proper management of their PCBs until their destruction. If "third parties" take possession of the PCBs, intentionally or not, those persons are responsible for complying with regulatory requirements while they have possession of the PCBs. PCB owners remain responsible for their PCBs and must ensure that regulatory requirements are met by the "third parties".

Environment Canada verifies the regulated community's compliance with the PCB Regulations by following the Compliance and Enforcement Policy for the Act and the enforcement plan established for these Regulations. Inspections and investigations to monitor compliance with the Act and Regulations may be conducted at any time without advance notice. Various responses to alleged offences may be taken, including tickets and prosecution, as set out in the Policy. Regulatees are encouraged to become familiar with the Compliance and Enforcement Policy and Environment Canada's Enforcement and Compliance web section.


PART 2 – PROHIBITIONS AND PERMITTED ACTIVITIES

PROHIBITIONS

Release into the environment, section 5

Releasing PCBs into the environment is prohibited under the Act. This prohibition applies to all PCBs, without exception and at all times, including during the conduct of activities permitted by the Regulations.

Subsection 5(1) sets forth the regulatory limits for releases from all sources other than from equipment in use referred to in sections 14 and 16 or for which an extension has been granted under section 17. The prohibition on release applies to all quantities at a concentration of 2 mg/kg or more for liquids and 50 mg/kg or more for solids.

Please note that subsection 5(1) also applies to releases from products stored at a PCB storage site or to PCBs stored elsewhere when the PCBs are in a concentration of less than 50 mg/kg. Environment Canada does not expect any PCBs to be released from stored products if proper storage practices have been implemented.

Subsection 5(2) sets forth the regulatory limit for releases from equipment in use referred to in sections 14 and 16 or for which an extension has been granted under section 17. The release prohibition of quantities in excess of one gram of PCB therefore applies to concentrations of 50 mg/kg or more and also less than 50 mg/kg of PCBs. This quantity applies to one piece of equipment and is applicable at all times. It does not apply to each individual release event, but is cumulative and applies to one or more release events from a single piece of equipment or at a single location. For example, a piece of equipment may be slowly dripping and will reach 1 gram after a long period of time. This is considered a release and must be reported.

The prohibition on release of liquids containing 2 mg/kg or more PCBs into the environment also applies to the spreading of dust control liquid on roads and to oil treatment of construction forms.

The release of PCBs from a piece of equipment into a holding tank where the PCBs can be recovered and the surfaces can be cleaned is not considered a release into the environment. Please refer to the definition of "environment" in subsection 3(1) of CEPA, 1999, under the heading "INTERPRETATION" of the Act.

Releases in excess of the regulatory limits must be reported orally and in writing, as required by section 95 of the Act. The procedures set in section 40 of the Regulations concerning the written report of a release and its submission must be followed.

Landfilling liquids with a concentration of 2 mg/kg or more is prohibited.

Landfilling solids containing less than 50 mg/kg of PCBs, including PCB-contaminated soil, in a landfill from which no PCBs can escape (double containment cell equipped with a leachate extraction system) and that is authorized by provincial authorities is not considered a release to the environment under the Regulations (assuming there is no leaks or releases into the environment from the site). However, landfilling solids containing less than 50 mg/kg in an authorized site that does not fully contain the PCBs at all times, such as a landfill without a proper containment or leachate extraction system, may become a release to the environment if precipitation over the site moves the PCBs out of the site with the landfill leachate or run-off. This would be considered a release to the environment and the 2 mg/kg regulatory limit for liquids would apply.

Following are examples of calculations of quantities in litres of spilled PCB liquid equivalent to 1 gram of PCBs and calculations of quantities in grams of PCBs equivalent to various quantities in litres of spilled PCB liquid.


Equation 1:

Quantity of spilled PCB liquid in litres (L) equivalent to 1 gram of PCB

Formula showing how to calculate the quantity of PCB in Liters. 1 gram of PCB times 1000 mg per gram is divided by the PCB concentration of the liquid times density of the liquid.

Equation 2:

Equivalent Quantity in grams of PCB (g) to Quantity of spilled PCB liquid in litres (L)

Formula showing how to calculate the quantity in grams of PCB. THe quantity of liquid PCB is multiplied by the density of the liquid multiplied by the PCB concentration of the liquid and everything is divided by 1000 mg/g.

1. Calculation of quantity in litres of spilled PCB liquid equivalent to 1 gram of PCBs for liquids containing PCBs in high concentrations, such as askarel:

  • Concentration of PCBs in a dielectric liquid (askarel): 10,000 mg/kg or more (can be as high as 700,000 - 900,000 mg/kg or more)
  • Density of this liquid containing high concentrations of PCBs: 1.5 kg/L

Formula showing how to calculate quantity of 1 gram of spilled PCB. 1 gram is multiplied by 1000 micrograms per gram is divided by 15000 mg/L.

= 0.066L or 66 ml of dielectric liquid (askarel) contains 1 gram of PCBs

2. Calculation of quantity in litres of spilled PCB liquid equivalent to 1 gram of PCBs for liquids containing low concentrations of PCBs, such as contaminated dielectric mineral oil:

  • PCB concentration in PCB contaminated dielectric mineral oil: 200 mg/kg
  • Density of this liquid containing low concentrations of PCBs: 0.9 kg/L

Formula showing how to calculate quantity in Liters of 1 gram of spilled PCB. 1 gram times 1000 mg/kg is divided by 200 mg/kg times 0.9 kg/L.

= 5.55 L of liquid (contaminated dielectric mineral oil) contains 1 gram of PCBs

  • PCB concentration in PCB contaminated dielectric mineral oil: 50 mg/kg
  • Density of this liquid containing low concentrations of PCBs: 0.9 kg/L

Formula showing another example of Liters of 1 gram of spilled PCB. 1 gram times 1000 mg/kg is all divided by 50 mg.kg times 0.9 kg/L.

= 22.2 L of liquid (contaminated dielectric mineral oil) contains 1 gram of PCBs

3. Calculation of equivalent quantities in grams of PCBs to quantities in litres of spilled PCB liquid

• Density of a product containing high concentrations of PCBs: 1.5 kg/L

a) 100 litres of spilled liquid containing 10,000 mg/kg of PCBs is equivalent to:

Formula showing how to calculate quantity of grams of PCB spilled when the known is Liters of spilled PCB. 100 L times 1.5 kg/L times 10000 mg/kg divided by 1000 mg/g.

= 1,500 grams or 1.5 kg of PCBs

b) 10 litres of spilled liquid containing 10,000 mg/kg of PCBs is equivalent to:

Formula showing amount of gram PCBs spilled when the known is in Liters. 10 L times 1.5 kg/L times 10000 mg/kg divided by 1000 mg/g.

= 150 grams of PCBs

• Density of a liquid containing low concentrations of PCBs: 0.9 kg/L

c) 100 litres of spilled liquid containing 50 mg/kg of PCBs is equivalent to:

Formula showing how to calculate grams of PCB spilled when the known is in Liters. 100 L times 0.9 kg/L times 50 mg/kg divided by 1000 mg/g.

= 4.5 grams of PCBs

d) 1 litre of spilled liquid containing 50 mg/kg of PCBs is equivalent to:

Formula showing how to calculate grams of PCB spilled when the only known is in Liters. 1L times 0.9 kg/L times 50 mg/kg all divided by 1000 mg/g.

= 0.045 gram of PCBs


Prohibited activities, section 6, subsections (a), (b) and (c)

Section 6 sets prohibited activities and their various application limits: manufacturing, exporting or importing PCBs or products containing PCBs (2 mg/kg), offer for sale or sell PCBs or products containing PCBs (50 mg/kg) and processing or use of PCBs (at any concentration). These limits apply at all time except where exceptions are provided by the Regulations.

Manufacturing, subsection (a)

The prohibition on manufacturing also applies to the unintentional manufacturing of PCBs in a manufacturing process or processing activity or in a manufactured product as a result of secondary reactions in the manufacturing process.

Exporting and Importing, subsection (a)

The prohibition on the export and import of PCBs or a product containing PCBs in a concentration of 2mg/kg or more is consistent with US EPA legislation on PCBs. The PCB Waste Export Regulations made under the Act prohibit the export of waste containing 50 mg/kg or more of PCBs, except for their elimination in the United States. However, US EPA legislation prohibits all imports in the United States of waste containing PCBs in a concentration of 2 mg/kg or more even for disposal.

The prohibition on the export and import of a product containing PCBs in a concentration of 2mg/kg or more applies to electrical transformers that may be imported or exported for repair, refurbishment or reuse as electrical transformers. Contact the US EPA for further guidance.

A transformer containing PCBs must be cleaned of all traces of PCBs in excess of 2 mg/kg in order to be imported into Canada or exported to the United States. A transformer that contains PCB‑contaminated oil and is emptied of its liquid contents without being cleaned may still contain residual PCBs on its internal surfaces and in internal parts that are not accessible. To be imported or exported, a transformer must be cleaned of any residual PCB contamination at 2 mg/kg or more and its PCB‑contaminated internal parts must be removed.

Neither the US EPA nor Environment Canada has set regulatory limits for PCB‑contaminated surfaces (expressed in ug/100 cm2) equivalent to the regulatory limit of 2 mg/kg for the manufacturing, export or import of products. Products surfaces (internal and external) must be thoroughly cleaned of all traces of PCBs in a concentration of 2mg/kg or more.


Processing and use, subsection (c)

This prohibition applies to all PCBs or products containing PCBs at any concentration, that is, whenever a PCB concentration is detectable by chemical analysis.

Environment Canada recognizes that detection limits might vary according to the technology and the methodology used. Environment Canada considers a non detectable concentration to be the detection limit of a technology and a methodology used in an accredited laboratory and whose scope of accreditation include the analytical method used to determine the concentrations of PCBs in the matrix in which the PCBs are located. As required by section 45, you must keep as documents/records your analytical result and the comparison with detection limits of accredited methods when they differ.

PERMITTED ACTIVITIES

Sections 7 to 17 set exceptions to prohibited activities. These exceptions allow certain activities to be conducted in very specific situations, with restrictions on time, location, concentrations or types of PCBs or products containing PCBs. Only activities specifically permitted in the Regulations can be carried out in Canada. For all permitted activities the prohibition on release applies at all time.

Laboratory analysis, section 7

Section 7 of the Regulations permits the manufacture, import, export, offer for sale, sale, processing and use of PCBs or products containing PCBs for calibrating instruments and for conducting laboratory analysis in a facility that is authorized for that purpose (i.e. for conducting laboratory analysis).

Section 7 does not prohibit the sale of PCBs to a facility that conducts laboratory analysis and that is authorized to conduct laboratory analysis or that conforms to internationally recognized guidelines on best laboratory practices (including laboratory safety, handling of hazardous materials, storage and disposal of hazardous wastes, releases to the environment) if the authorities of the jurisdiction where the lab is located do not have a mechanism in place to authorize the facility. The facility is not required to be specifically authorized for PCB analysis. There are no time or concentration restrictions on permitted activities for laboratory analysis.


Research, section 8

So that research on the effects of PCBs on human health or on the environment is not hindered, the Regulations allow the offer for sale, sale, process or use of PCBs or products containing PCBs for that purpose. The definition in the Actapplies to the offer for sale and sale and that definition includes the transfer of physical possession or control of the substance, such as a donation. There are no time or concentration restrictions on permitted activities for this type of research.

The offer for sale and sale of PCBs permitted for this type of research does not apply to technological development work for PCB destruction that is not authorized by the jurisdiction where the destruction is conducted. PCB owners who transfer PCBs to universities for destruction testing and the universities that conduct such testing without provincial authorization are not in compliance with the regulations. PCB owners can transfer their PCBs only to facilities that are authorized to destroy PCBs. In Canada, PCB destruction is regulated by provincial authorities.

Electrical capacitors, section 9

Section 9 applies to electrical capacitors found in consumer products. A consumer product is a product that can be easily purchased from a major retailer and that is therefore accessible to everyone, such as household appliances or appliances for residential use like refrigerators or submersible pumps manufactured before 1980 in which such electrical capacitors can be found. The capacitors themselves are not considered consumer products.

Capacitors that are in consumer products can be used until the end of the useful life of these products. These capacitors can not be used again as spare parts..

Aircraft, ships, trains and other vehicles, section 10

Vehicles used, offered for sale, sold, exported or imported for transportation purposes may retain some equipment that contains PCBs, that is not easily accessible and the removal of which would destroy the equipment or vehicles in which they are found, such as very small electrical capacitors in communication, navigation or electronic control equipment or cables containing PCBs (e.g. in ships). There are no time or concentration limits on permitted activities for such vehicles.

All other equipment containing any concentration of PCBs must be removed from these vehicles for the activities in question (use, offer for sale, sale, import, or export for transportation) to be permitted. Equipment that must be removed includes transformers, capacitors, diffusion pumps, heat transfer equipment, hydraulic equipment, electromagnets and light ballasts.

However, the prohibitions in section 6 apply to vehicles for purposes other than transportation, such as recycling (processing), elimination (processing) or exhibit in a museum (use). For these other purposes, under section 6, the offer for sale and sale of vehicles containing equipment that contains PCBs at a concentration of 50 mg/kg or more is prohibited, the import and export of such vehicles containing equipment that contains PCBs at a concentration of 2 mg/kg or more is prohibited and the use and processing of such vehicles containing equipment that contains any concentration of PCBs is prohibited. Use and processing of such vehicles for other purposes than transport can occur as long as all PCBs are removed and/or destroyed.

Colouring pigment, section 11

The manufacturing processes for colouring pigments cannot currently be modified to eliminate the unintentional manufacturing of PCBs during secondary reactions in the manufacturing process of such pigments. Processes permitted by the US EPA are also permitted in Canada. There are no time restrictions on permitted activities for these pigments. However, there are restrictions on PCB concentrations.


Destruction, Section 12

Section 12 allows limited processing of PCBs or products containing PCBs. The mixing or diluting PCBs or products containing PCBs with any other product is prohibited except to destroy the PCBs or recover them to destroy them in an authorized facility.

The purpose of this requirement is to eliminate the mixing and dilution (processing) of liquids containing PCBs with other liquids that are not containing any PCBs and thus eliminate the dispersion of these PCBs.

In addition, under section 4 of the Regulations, owners of PCBs and products containing PCBs as well as "third parties" who take possession of PCBs in order to destroy them or have them destroyed are required to ensure that regulatory requirements are met, including the requirement not to process or dilute the PCBs except for the purpose of destroying them.

This requirement should not be seen as preventing the collection, consolidation (or mixing) and recycling of products containing PCBs if the recycling process destroys the PCBs or if they are recovered in order to be destroyed before the recycling is conducted. Owners of PCBs, owners of recycling facilities and owners of collections systems must comply with section 12, but the final responsibility for ensuring compliance with section 12 rests on the PCB owners, as set in section 4.

Owners of PCBs must ensure before selling their product containing PCBs to a recycler that the recycling process does destroy all the PCBs or that the recycler will send the recovered PCBs for destruction. Owners of oils containing PCBs who wish to sell them to a recycler whose process does not destroy all the PCBs or does not recover all the PCBs for destruction purposes must remove all PCBs themselves before sending them for recycling. Mobile systems for the chemical treatment of PCBs are available in Canada and can be used to eliminate PCBs of over 2 mg/kg.

Even in specific cases where owners of PCBs at a concentration of less than 50 mg/kg are permitted to sell their PCBs, they are still required to ensure compliance with section 12. They must ensure before the sale is completed (during the offer for sale and up to the completion of the sale) that their product is sold to a recycling or processing facility whose process destroys all PCBs or sends them for destruction, not just dilutes them.

This requirement does not prohibit the incineration of oils contaminated with PCBs at a concentration of less than 50 mg/kg for the recovery of their energy content, where authorized by provincial authorities, provided that the PCBs are completely destroyed.

This requirement also applies to the recycling of metal products containing residual PCBs on their surfaces. These metal products can be cleaned with solvents that are effective against residual PCBs on their surfaces, such as Varsol, turpentine, light fuel oil and kerosene. The recovered PCBs and solvents are then eliminated as PCB waste in a facility authorized for this purpose.

Also note that PCB-contaminated surfaces on transformer carcasses (inner walls and core of the transformer) must be thoroughly cleaned of all traces of PCBs (non detectable concentration) by either the owner or recycler.. The removal of all traces of PCBs on a metal surface can be verified by a wipe sample that provides a PCB analysis result of "Non-Detect." Environment Canada recognizes that detection limits might vary according to the technology and the methodology used. Environment Canada considers a "non detectable concentration" to be the detection limit of a technology and a methodology used in an accredited laboratory and whose scope of accreditation include the analytical method used to determine the concentrations of PCBs in the matrix in which the PCBs are located. As required by section 45, you must keep as documents/records your analytical result and the comparison with detection limits of accredited methods when non-accredited methods are used.

Companies that offer PCB surface cleaning, processing or destruction services are authorized by provincial authorities. It is therefore recommended that you consult provincial departments to obtain a list of facilities that are authorized to provide chemical management, chemical treatment and destruction services.

Canada has mobile as well as stationary facilities authorized to process and destroy PCBs. Stationary facilities use either an incineration or a chemical dechlorination procedure to destroy the PCBs. Mobile units use either a chemical dechlorination or a thermal procedure to destroy the PCBs.


Solid Products, section 13

An exception to the prohibition on manufacturing PCBs or products containing PCBs is made for the manufacture of posts and beams for landscaping and parking dividers made of recycled plastics containing residue from the shredding of automobiles and other products that were historically contaminated with PCBs at a concentration less than 50 kg/mg.

For the purposes of these Regulations, historic PCB contamination of such residue is expected to progressively disappear.

As a precaution, only the types of products manufactured before September 5, 2008 are allowed to be manufactured, and only commercial or industrial use of these products is permitted. There are no time restrictions in this section on permitted manufacturing, offering for sale or sale.

Cables, pipelines, electrical capacitors and other equipment, section 14

Only the equipment set forth in this section, typically industrial or commercial in nature, can continue to be used for the purpose for which it was manufactured, in any concentration and until the end of its useful life. An exception is made to the section 6 prohibition on PCB use to allow for the use of this equipment.

Cables, pipelines and related equipment can therefore continue to be used until the end of their useful life and in any concentration of PCBs. They can no longer be reused in the same condition once they have been removed from the site where they were located on September 5, 2008, unless they are cleaned of all the PCBs they contained. In cases where they have not been cleaned of their PCBs, they can only be moved or dismantled to be stored or shipped for PCB destruction. The PCB storage and destruction requirements therefore apply.

The equipment set out in paragraph 14(1)(d) can continue to be used until the end of its useful life if it contains less than 50 mg/kg of PCBs, was being used or stored as a replacement part on September 5, 2008, and if the condition set forth in subsection 16(3) is met. Subsection 16(3) prohibits the use of liquids extracted from such equipment containing PCBs at a concentration of 2 mg/kg or more except in situations involving the reconditioning of the physico-chemical properties of the dielectric fluid as described in section 16(3) of this guide.

There are also no time restrictions on the use of replacement equipment and replacement parts set out in paragraph 14(1)(d) that are being stored for future use or awaiting use, provided that they contain less than 50 mg/kg of PCBs.

Section 5 concerning environmental releases applies at all times to cables, pipelines and equipment. When they cease to be used, section 18 comes into play.


Liquids for servicing, section 15

This section deals with liquids that are not contained in equipment but that are stored in a container and used to partially or completely fill equipment after repairs or servicing.

It differs from subsection 16(3), which deals with liquids that are contained in equipment and that are completely or partially removed from that equipment during servicing or for any other reason.

Concentration less than 2 mg/kg, subsection 15(1)

This exception from the prohibition in section 6 on the use of PCBs allows for the use of dielectric liquids currently on the market (concentration less than 2 mg/kg) for servicing any equipment, including equipment that contains PCBs (primarily equipment containing less than 500 mg/kg) for operational reasons. These dielectric liquids currently on the market can be used to top up or fill equipment, in whole or in part, during servicing or repairs.

However, subsection 16(3) requires the end of use or decontamination of liquids containing PCBs at concentrations of 2 mg/kg or more when they are removed from the equipment except in situations involving the regeneration of the dielectric liquid as described in section 16(3) of this guide.

Concentration of 500 mg/kg or more, subsection 15(2)

This exception from the prohibition in section 6 on the use of PCBs allows for the use of dielectric liquids with high concentrations of PCBs, such as askarel, for topping up or filling equipment designed and manufactured for operating with askarel only, during servicing or repairs.

Given that liquids containing 500 mg/kg or more of PCBs can be added to equipment containing 500 mg/kg or more of PCBs during maintenance, liquids removed from the equipment and containing 500 mg/kg or more of PCBs can therefore be reused in that same equipment until 31 December 2009 or up to the time an extension was granted for a piece of equipment.


USE - END OF USE DATES AND EXTENSION

End-of-use dates for PCBs and PCB-containing products have been set based on two PCB concentration limits: 50 and 500 mg/kg.

End of Use dates, section 16

Only equipment set in subparagraphs 14(1)(d)(i) to (iii) containing 50 mg/kg or more of PCBs and in use at the coming into force of the Regulations on 5 September 2008 can continue to be used until the end of use date in 2009 or 2025 for the purposes for which it was originally manufactured. Equipment set in subparagraphs 14(1)(d)(i) to (iii) is typically industrial or commercial in nature.

Replacement equipment and replacement parts stored for future use or awaiting use are not considered to be in use. As of September 5, 2008, their use is prohibited if they contain 50 mg/kg or more of PCBs, and they had to be stored or shipped for destruction by October 5, 2008. However, those that are already in place and ready to be used in case of emergency are considered to be in use.

Only facilities named in subparagraph 16(1)(b)(i) are affected by the 2009 end of use requirement. The requirement does not apply to CLSCs (local community service centres), medical clinics or to residential daycares. For residential daycares it is impossible to find the electrical equipment set forth in subparagraphs 14(1)(d)(i) to (iii).

In subparagraph 16(1)(b)(i), the 100m limit is set for large lots containing several buildings, such as hospital complexes and military bases.

Equipment set out in subparagraphs 14(1)(d)(i) to (iii) that is less than 100 m from these prescribed facilities but on public land, such as a street or sidewalk, or on land owned by a party other than the owner of the prescribed facilities, is not subject to the 2009 end-of-use deadline.

Pole‑top transformers and light ballasts no matter where they are located are specifically referred to in subsection 16(2) for a 2025 end of use date.

Equipment located in the prescribed facilities is either owned by the facility or owned by an electricity distribution company and rented. The owners of the facility using the equipment and the owner of the equipment are thus responsible for ensuring that this requirement is met.

Equipment set forth in subparagraphs 14(1)(d)(i) to (iii)--such as voltage transformers, current transformers, circuit breakers and bushings--with PCB concentrations of less than 500 mg/kg is subject, under subparagraph 16(1)(b)(ii) , to a later end-of-use deadline (2025), provided that it is not in a prescribed location. When the concentration or presence of PCBs in equipment is unknown, any relevant information may be used to determine whether the equipment may contain PCBs and whether the concentration is high or low. This information can be used to set sampling priorities to confirm PCB concentrations.


Light ballasts and pole-top electrical transformers, section 16, subsection 16(2)

The use of light ballasts and pole‑top electrical transformers with their pole‑top auxiliary equipment is allowed, without any restrictions regarding location, until December 31 2025 if they contain PCBs in a concentration of 50 mg/kg or more. An end of use deadline of 2025 is provided as there is a large number of such equipment and it is difficult to access.

The pole top auxiliary equipment in question includes all equipment mounted on poles including pole top capacitors and reclosers.

This requirement does not apply to transformers installed at ground level or on a concrete slab (e.g. pad mount distribution transformers).

Liquid removed from equipment – concentration of 2 mg/kg or more, section 16, subsection 16(3)

This requirement allows a gradual elimination of PCBs in equipment with a concentration of 2 to 50 mg/kg that is not subject to end-of-use dates and also helps regulatees to comply with the 2025 end-of-use deadline by requiring that every maintenance period be used to eliminate the PCBs that they identify. This requirement should also eliminate the continued contamination of non‑PCB equipment and the release of small amounts of PCBs into non‑PCB liquids.

When liquids containing a concentration of 2 mg/kg or more of PCBs are removed from equipment during maintenance or repairs or for any other reason, other than the physico-chemical reconditioning described below, they cannot be put back in the equipment or into any other equipment for reuse. For such liquids to be reused in equipment, they must be decontaminated to less than 2 mg/kg.

Such liquids cannot be mixed with any other liquid except to destroy the PCBs, as required under section 12. Any other reuse involving a mixture of these liquids with other liquids without the PCBs being destroyed or recovered is prohibited under section 12.

As subsection 15(2) allows for the reuse of liquids emptied from equipment containing PCBs in a concentration of 500 mg/kg or more until December 31, 2009, subsection 16(3) applies to liquids removed from equipment containing 2–500 mg/kg of PCBs.

Some equipment maintenance work involves the reconditioning of the physico-chemical properties of the dielectric liquid of one piece of equipment on site, either by continuously recirculating the liquid in a closed loop from the equipment to a treatment unit parked on site next to the equipment or by transferring temporarily the liquid of one piece of equipment to a treatment unit parked on site next to the equipment without mixing it with liquids from other equipment and by returning it to the same equipment from which it was extracted. Such reconditioning and continuous recirculation of the liquid of one piece of equipment in a closed loop or temporary transfer of the liquid of one piece of equipment is not considered removal under subsection 16(3). This subsection therefore does not apply to this situation.

In any other situation involving the removal of liquids, in order to comply with subsection 16(3), the liquid removed must be decontaminated to less than 2 mg/kg in order to be reused in any equipment. Note that a transformer containing PCBs in its core will continue to release these PCBs over time and the new liquids used to refill the transformer will become contaminated with PCBs. The PCB concentration of these liquids might increase over time above 2 mg/kg.


Extension of end-of-use date, section 17

Subsection 16(1) of the Regulations stipulates that the end-of-use date for equipment or liquids containing PCBs in a concentration of 50 mg/kg or more (or 500 mg/kg or more, as applicable) was December 31, 2009. You are therefore no longer permitted to use this equipment or these liquids if you have not obtained an extension from Environment Canada.

Please note that the extension application process ended on December 31, 2009. We therefore recommend that you replace any such equipment still in use after December 31, 2009, as soon as possible and retain all documents concerning the replacement of this equipment at the facility in which the equipment is located (for example, the plan for phasing out the equipment's use and how the plan will be implemented).

All requirements of the Regulations apply to any equipment that is still in use after December 31, 2009, including the on-line report regarding their use, end of use, storage if applicable, their being sent for destruction or PCB destruction, 33(1), their labelling, and retention of documents and records.

Notice of change to information, subsection 17(4)

Any change in the information provided in the application--such as a change of owner, applicant, authorized person or expiry date--must be submitted to the Director of the Waste Reduction and Management Division within 30 days of the change. However, certain replacement- or shutdown-related changes can be submitted in the report provided for in subsection 33(2). See subsection 33(2) of this document and the requested information in the on-line reporting system.

The following information is no longer applicable since the deadline to submit an application was December 31, 2009.

The owner of equipment may apply to the department for an extension of the 2009 deadline for use of the equipment if one of the following criteria is met:

  • if the replacement equipment is engineered to order and it is not technically feasible to replace it before December 31, 2009, or
  • if the equipment is located at a facility that is scheduled for permanent closure or on before December 31, 2014.

Application for extension must be submitted no later than August 1, 2009 to:

Director, Waste Reduction and Management Division
Environment Canada
351 St-Joseph Blvd, 14 th Floor
Gatineau (Quebec) K1A 0H3

No specific form is required when submitting an application. Applications can be made for more than one piece of equipment, but the information required by the Regulations must be submitted for each piece of equipment included in an application for extension. The following explanations should help regulatees prepare their applications.

The end of use extension only applies to the following equipment:

  • Equipment containing PCBs in a concentration of 500 mg/kg or more, regardless of its location
  • Equipment containing PCBs in a concentration of 50 mg/kg or more in an area set forth in subparagraph 16(1)(b)(i):
    • at a drinking water treatment plant;
    • at a food or feed processing plant;
    • at a child care facility;
    • at a preschool, primary school or secondary school;
    • at a hospital;
    • at a senior citizens' care facility; or
    • on the property on which the plant or facility is located and within 100 m of it.

      The types of equipment for which a request may be submitted are set forth in subparagraphs 14(1)(d)(i) to (iii):

    • electrical capacitors and their auxiliary electrical equipment, other than light ballasts;
    • electrical transformers and their auxiliary electrical equipment, except pole‑top electrical transformers and their pole‑top auxiliary electrical equipment;
    • electromagnets that are not used in the handling of food, feed or any additive to food or feed;
    • heat transfer equipment;
    • hydraulic equipment;
    • vapour diffusion pumps; and
    • bridge bearings.

As required under section 17, applications for extension must contain the following information:

  1. Specific information regarding the applicant (only once if the application is for more than one piece of equipment) and the equipment which is the subject of the application for extension set forth in paragraphs 17(3)(a) and (b).
  2. The unique identification number on the label on the equipment which is the subject of the application for extension as set forth in paragraph 17(3)( c) and subsection 29(4).
  3. Specific information regarding the facility where the equipment which is the subject of the application for extension is located, as set forth in paragraph 17(3)(d).
  4. Information demonstrating that one of the two criteria for applying for an extension has been met for each piece of equipment referred to in the application. The application for extension will be reviewed based on the following definitions and examples of information:

    Criteria A

    The replacement equipment is engineered to order and it is not technically feasible to replace it on or before December 31, 2009.

    "Equipment engineered to order" means equipment that is made to order, from design to delivery, representing a unique manufacture (only one exists).

    "Not technically feasible" refers to unexpected technical problems (caused by the type of equipment, replacement method or equipment operating conditions) encountered when replacing equipment and when, upon analysis of all possible options, there is no realistic solution to those problems.

    The applicant must provide details regarding the technical problems encountered when attempting to comply with the end of use date of December 31, 2009 and the replacement of the equipment. These details can include:

    • A description of the type of equipment to be decommissioned and replaced and its unique design and manufacture
    • Confirmation of production and delivery difficulties encountered by the manufacturer contacted by the applicant to replace the equipment by December 31, 2009 and the production and delivery time required by the manufacturer to replace the equipment.
    • Identification and analysis of realistic alternative solutions considered in an attempt to comply with the December 31, 2009 end of use date.
    • The purchase order or proof of purchase for the replacement equipment, confirmation of its manufacture and delivery.
    • A description of the required installation and a schedule for replacing of the equipment to be decommissioned, the method used to bring the new equipment into service.

    Criteria B

    The equipment to be replaced is in a facility scheduled for permanent closure no later than December 31, 2014.

    "Scheduled for permanent closure" means administrative and technical measures for terminating the facility's operations.

    The applicant must provide details regarding the administrative and technical measures taken to terminate the facility's operations. These measures include:

    • Confirmation of the facility's closure by its owner;
    • A planned schedule for dismantling the facility; and
    • A planned schedule for eliminating PCBs at the facility, including equipment containing PCBs subject to an end of use date.

  5. The applicant must provide information demonstrating that all necessary measures are being taken to eliminate or mitigate any negative effects of PCBs contained in the equipment on the environment and on human health, including:
    • Measures to reduce releases resulting from accidental spills or leaks from the equipment;
    • Measures to reduce the generation of new PCB‑contaminated liquids during maintenance on the equipment;
    • Measures to improve the sound management and handling of PCBs during the extension of the equipment's use, including relevant training for personnel;
    • A plan with a schedule for terminating use of the equipment on the date indicated in the request and for dismantling the equipment and destroying the PCBs; and
    • A plan for the monthly inspection of the equipment, throughout the extension period, for damage that could result in the release of PCBs.

PART 3 – STORAGE

Storage Application – Concentration of 50mg/kg or more, section 18

The Regulations' requirements apply to storage at a PCB storage site. A PCB storage site must be established when the PCBs or PCB-containing products cease to be processed daily or used and their concentration is 50 mg/kg or more. They must also be in a quantity greater than 100 litres or 100 kilograms of products or 1 kilogram of PCBs at a particular site, that is, on a single property.

Therefore, PCB-containing solid or liquid products with a concentration of less than 50 mg/kg are not subject to section 18 and the storage requirements in a PCB storage site. When their concentration is 50 mg/kg or more and they are in a quantity of less than 100 L or 100 kg of product or 1 kg of PCBs they are also not subject to the storage requirements in a PCB storage site. However, they must be stored in accordance with best storage practices for hazardous wastes. There are no time restrictions on their storage.

To determine whether products containing PCBs are subject to the storage requirements, it is necessary to verify the two quantity criteria (quantity of the product containing PCBs (100L or 100kg) and quantity of pure PCB that it contains (1kg). As soon as either of these two criteria is met, you must comply with the requirements for storage at a PCB storage site.

For example, for standard 4-foot fluorescent lamp ballasts:

Assume that a ballast weighs 2 kg (gross weight) and contains a quantity of 23.6 g (net weight)

(0.0236 kg) or 17.2 mL (0.0172 L) of pure PCBs (refer to the publication "Identification of Lamp Ballasts Containing PCBs" (pdf; 4.47MB))

Quantity criterion of 100 kg of product (gross weight)

= 50 ballasts of 2 kg each

Quantity criterion of 1 kg of pure PCB (net weight)

= [1 kg] / [0.0236 kg (23.6 g)]

= 42.37 ballasts

In the case of the lamp ballasts, the lesser quantity of ballasts (i.e. 42.37 ballasts containing 1 kg or more of PCBs) applies. Therefore, if you have 42 ballasts or less to store, the storage requirements in a PCB storage site do not apply.

Subsection 18(2) stipulates that the quantity of PCBs or products containing PCBs is the aggregate of all quantities of PCBs and PCB-containing products that are located at a particular site. A site consists of all the facilities located on the same property.

Subsection 18(3) states that the storage requirements do not apply to:

  • solid or liquid products that are processed daily or used. The requirements apply to everything that ceases to be used definitively and to all equipment that is moved for maintenance purposes. The requirements do not apply to equipment in a facility that operates on a seasonal basis (fish processing plant);
  • pipelines that transport natural gas, petroleum or petroleum products, and any associated equipment that is in contact with the natural gas, petroleum or petroleum products, if they remain in the place where they are on September 5, 2008. This provides more time than 30 days after they ceased to be used for their removal as usually infrastructure demolition is required for their removal. It is not a permission to abandon pipelines in place after they cease to be used as "abandonment" is a release into the environment under CEPA. Records on their location must be kept and a removal plan must be developed and implemented in order to show that there is a commitment to remove them. Once removed, part 3 on storage applies to them;
  • cables if they remain in the place where they are on September 5, 2008. This provides more time than 30 days after they ceased to be used for their removal as usually infrastructure demolition is required for their removal (under roads, parking areas, airport landing paths, dams, locks, building foundations). It is not a permission to abandon cables in place after they ceased to be used as "abandonment" is a release into the environment under CEPA. Records on their location must be kept and a removal plan must be developed and implemented in order to show that there is a commitment to remove them. Once removed, part 3 on storage applies to them;

Part 3 regarding storage apply to PCB-contaminated soils in a concentration of 50 mg/kg or more once they are excavated from their original location.


Requirement to store, section 19

Once threshold under section 18 have been met:

Subsection 19(1) stipulates that once PCBs or PCB-containing products cease to be used or processed daily, they must be either sent for destruction to a facility authorized for that purpose or stored at a PCB storage site within 30 days.

Subsection 19(2) stipulates that if the PCBs or PCB-containing products are remote from a roadway system, the deadline for storing them at a storage site is as soon as feasible but no later than one year from the time they cease to be processed daily or used.

Prohibition against storage, section 20

Effective September 5, 2009, no person may store PCBs or products containing PCBs--except lamp ballasts--at any of the facilities prescribed. This requirement does not apply to CLSCs (local community service centres), medical clinics or residential daycares.

The 100-m limit is set for large lots containing several buildings, such as hospital complexes and military bases.

PCB storage sites that are located less than 100 m from these prescribed facilities but on public land, such as a street or sidewalk, or on land owned by a party other than the owner of the prescribed facilities, are not subject to the 2009 end-of-storage date.

Maximum storage periods, section 21

It is prohibited to store PCBs or products containing PCBs beyond:

  • one year at a PCB storage site other than an authorized facility that is a transfer site or a facility that is authorized to destroy them. The one-year period begins on the day on which they are no longer used, i.e. the maximum period of one month to make the storage decision prescribed in section 19 is included in this one year-period;
  • one year at an authorized facility that is a transfer site. If the PCBs or the products containing PCBs are stored at several transfer sites, the one-year period begins on the day they are received at the first transfer site;
  • two years at an authorized facility that is authorized to destroy them.

The maximum storage periods provided for in this section do not apply to liquids for servicing for which an extension has been granted under section 17.


Maximum storage periods - Exceptions, section 22

Section 21 does not apply to solids and liquids containing PCBs in a concentration of 50 mg/kg or more that are the result of environmental restoration work and that are stored on site while the work is being performed, on the condition that information be provided to the Minister.

To take advantage of this exception, the owner of the land where the solids and liquids in question are located must notify the Minister at least 30 days before the storage of the solids or liquids and submit the information stipulated in the Regulations. The owner must also notify the Minister in writing at least 30 days in advance of any changes to the information provided.

If the owner expects that the one-year on-site storage limit will not be exceeded then it is not required to notify the Minister.

The solids and liquids covered in this section are typically soils, water, accidental spill cleaning materials and demolition waste.

PCBs or products containing PCBs stored at the coming into force of the Regulations, section 23

This section applies to all PCBs or products containing PCBs already stored before September 5, 2008.

PCBs that must be destroyed outside the facility can be stored until December 31, 2009. These PCBs or PCB-containing products can first be shipped to a transfer site for their consolidation/ processing and stored there for up to one year before being shipped to a destruction facility.

PCBs that are destroyed on- site at the location where they are stored by a facility authorized for this purpose, can be stored there until they are destroyed but no later than December 31, 2011.

PCB storage site, section 24

Section 24 defines a PCB storage site. A PCB storage site is not included in the definition of "authorized facility" provided in section 1 of the Regulations; it is therefore not an authorized facility.

An enclosed structure means a structure with a floor, walls, ceiling and a door, such as a hangar or a room in a building.

Storage requirements - Access, inspection and maintenance of a storage site, sections 25 to 27

The requirements are similar to those of the repealed Storage of PCB Material Regulations.

Storage requirements – Fire protection and emergency procedures, section 28

This requirement is different from that of the repealed Storage of PCB Material Regulations. It now includes annual verification of a fire protection and emergency procedures plan. In addition, an updated copy must now be made available to--rather than being submitted to--the local fire department.


PART 4 – LABELLING, REPORTS AND RECORDS

LABELLING

Labelling – Equipment and liquids used for their servicing, sections 29 to 32

Subsection 29(1) applies to equipment referred to in section 16 whose concentration is 50 mg/kg or more and whose use is permitted until an end-of-use deadline.

Environment Canada no longer supplies labels. It is the responsibility of the owner of this equipment to have labels and notices produced in accordance with the Regulations.

The purpose of this section is to ensure that equipment is labelled as soon as possible even when it is still in use. The label must be affixed no later than 30 days after the day on which the equipment or the liquid ceases to be used. However if the PCB content of the equipment is known, it is recommended to label the equipment that is still in use.

It is not necessary to affix a new label on equipment or containers that already bear a label that indicates the presence of PCBs. Old labels provided by Environment Canada are considered compliant with the current Regulations.

It is not required to affix a label in compliance with subsection 29(4) for equipment that is too small, including lamp ballasts. For these, the label must be affixed to their storage container.

Affixing labels on equipment that is in use is not required, regardless of its PCB concentrations. However, in order to comply with all requirements of the Regulations, including section 5 on releases, section 12 on destruction and processing, which include mixing and dilution, and subsection 16(3) on servicing, an identification system could be set up to identify equipment in use that contains 2 mg/kg or more of PCBs. The use of a label that is in compliance with subsection 29(4) as a system for identifying PCBs at any concentration is one acceptable method. However, this does not limit the use of other systems for identifying PCBs.


REPORTS

Use - End of use and Extensions for equipment and liquids in containers – 2009, section 33, subsections 33(1), (2) and (3)

For these three reports, liquids in equipment, liquids in containers, and solids, including drained carcasses of equipment containing PCBs, must be reported for each calendar year according to whether they were:

  • in use on December 31;
  • stored at the person's PCB storage site on December 31;
  • sent, in that calendar year, to an authorized facility that is a transfer site;
  • sent, in that calendar year, to an authorized facility that is authorized to destroy them; or
  • destroyed in that calendar year.

According to subsection 19(1), when PCBs or products containing PCBs cease to be used, they must be either be stored or sent for destruction within 30 days. If this operation is performed in December of the reporting year, the PCBs are considered to no longer be used and must be reported as being stored at a storage site or sent for destruction.

For these 3 reports, the activity of being stored applies strictly to storage at a PCB storage site when s18 thresholds are met. The quantities lower than these thresholds do not need to be reported in the "stored at the person's PCB storage site on December 31" activity. However, the reporting of other activities is always applicable regardless of the quantity.

To report PCBs or PCB-containing products as "destroyed in that calendar year," the owner must have proof (a certificate) of the destruction of the PCBs and must retain such proof in accordance with section 45.

Once PCBs have been reported as sent to a transfer site or destruction facility by the owner, the owner is no longer required to prepare a report for the years between the year of shipment and the year of destruction, which can be up to three years (one year of storage at a transfer site and two years of storage at a destruction facility). These facilities are responsible for reporting them during those years. The last report prepared by the owner is for the year of their destruction. The owner will report the PCBs as "destroyed in that calendar year."

A person must declare only the products that have a known or presumed presence of PCBs. If there is any doubt, it is the PCB owners' responsibility to find out whether or not a product contains PCBs or to consider they contain PCBs in the highest concentration range.

Only one report is prepared per calendar year and it covers only one activity, the last activity to have occurred in that year either in use, stored, sent for destruction or destroyed.

Subsection 33(1) report applies to equipment and liquids whose end-of-use date is December 31, 2009 (section 16).

Subsection 33(2) report applies to equipment and liquids whose end-of-use date is the date established pursuant to a granted extension, which can be no later than December 31, 2014 (section 17).

Subsection 33(3) report applies to PCBs or PCB-containing products whose end-of-use date is December 31, 2025 (section 16). This type of report is necessary only as of the date on which these PCBs are no longer used.


Storage of PCBs or products – PCB concentration of 50 mg/kg or more (PCBs with no end-of-use date), section 37

This report applies to owners of PCBs or PCB-containing products as well as to owners of facilities other than those provided for in section 38 (transfer site or destruction facility) who store them at their PCB storage site. It applies to owners of facilities that remove PCBs from equipment for their destruction.

This report applies only to products with a concentration of 50 mg/kg or more such as:

  • products other than those provided for in subsections 33(1), 33(2) and 33(3) such as cables, pipelines and waste containing PCBs;
  • stored products provided for in section 23;
  • liquids and solids resulting from restoration work, such as contaminated soils and water, as well as demolition materials provided for in section 22; and
  • products resulting from restoration caused by a release, provided for in sections 5 and 40.

Transfer site or destruction facility – PCB concentration of 50 mg/kg or more, section 38

This report applies only to owners of authorized facilities--either a transfer site or a destruction facility--that store PCBs at their PCB storage site before they are destroyed.

This report applies to products whose concentration is 50 mg/kg or more and that are stored in a PCB storage site.

Date of submission of report, section 39

Reports are submitted annually as long as the PCBs or the PCBs contained in products are not destroyed or the manufacturing of products such as colouring pigments and solid products does not cease. A report is submitted on or before March 31 of the year after the calendar year for which the report was prepared.



Release into the environment, section 40

The online reporting system can be used to submit this report. The report will automatically be sent to the Regional Director, Environmental Enforcement Division, as required in the Regulations.

To submit this report in writing to the Environmental Enforcement Division, contact the Environmental Enforcement in order to obtain the applicable fax number, email address or mailing address of their office in the region where the release occurs.

Contact Environmental Enforcement at: environmental.enforcement@ec.gc.ca, or by telephone at: 1-800-668-6767 (in Canada only) or 819-997-2800.

Retention of reports, section 41

Any person who is required to submit a report shall keep a copy of the report at their principal place of business in Canada for at least five years after the day on which the report is submitted.

Method of submission of reports, section 42

Environment Canada has established an online reporting system that covers all reporting requirements of the Regulations. Several documents and videos explaining how to use this system have been prepared to help regulatees.

PCB Online Reporting System

Under section 42 of the Regulations, Environment Canada has established the PCB Online Reporting System as the electronic format that must be used by regulatees to submit the reports that are required under sections 33 to 38. The PCB Online Reporting System can also be used to submit the reports required under sections 22 and 40.

You can also access the PCB Online Reporting System through the PCB web site of Environment Canada.

The home page of the system gives you access to a video to help you register your organization online. Once you have registered and logged in, you will have access to a video that will help you open a sub-account and a delegation of authority and to help you prepare your reports.

Additional information including a User Guide on the PCB Online Reporting System can be found on the PCB Online Reporting System.


Reports submitted in writing

Reports submitted in writing in accordance to section 42, and information provided in accordance to section 22must be sent to the:

Director, Waste Reduction and Management Division,
Environment Canada,
351 St-Joseph Blvd, 14th Floor,
Gatineau QC K1A 0H3

RECORDS

Records for permitted activities, section 43

This section stipulates who is required to develop and maintain records for permitted activities. The development and retention of records apply to PCBs or products containing PCBs in any concentration.

Inspection records, section 44

This section covers the required information in inspection records to be developed and maintained by the owner or operator of a PCB storage site and by owners of equipment that have been granted an extension.

Retention of records, section 45

This section stipulates who is required to maintain and retain records pursuant to sections 43 and 44 and for how long. The retention of records applies to PCBs or products containing PCBs in any concentration.


PART 5 – REPEALS AND COMING INTO FORCE

Repeal, section 46

The Chlorobiphenyls Regulations have been repealed.

Repeal, section 47

The Storage of PCB Material Regulations have been repealed.

Coming into force

The PCB Regulations came into force on September 5, 2008, and the Regulations Amending the PCB Regulationscame into force on March 31, 2010.

RESOURCES

Any information concerning PCBs as well as the PCB Regulations can be found at the Environment Canada's PCB Web site.

A consolidated version of the PCB Regulations is available.

CONTACT

If you have any specific questions on the regulatory requirements, please contact the Waste Reduction and Management Division at PCBProgram@ec.gc.ca or at 1-819-997-2800 or 1-800-668-6767.

APPENDICES

APPENDIX A – SUMMARY TABLE OF KEY REQUIREMENTS OF PART 2 – PROHIBITIONS AND PERMITTED ACTIVITIES
APPENDIX B – SUMMARY TABLE OF KEY REGULATORY REQUIREMENTS OF PART 2 – PERMITTED ACTIVITIES, PART 3 – STORAGE, PART 4 – LABELLING, REPORTS AND RECORDS FOR

  1. ELECTRICAL CAPACITORS CONTAINING PCBs (other than light ballasts containing PCBs)
  2. LIGHT BALLASTS AND POLE-TOP TRANSFORMERS AND THEIR POLE-TOP AUXILIARY ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT CONTAINING PCBs
  3. CABLES AND PIPELINES CONTAINING PCBs
  4. EQUIPMENT UNDER SECTION 4(1)(d)(i) TO (iii) CONTAINING PCBs

APPENDIX C – SUMMARY TABLE OF KEY REQUIREMENTS FOR PART 3 – STORAGE (sections 18 to 23)
APPENDIX D – SUMMARY TABLE OF KEY REQUIREMENTS OF PART 4 ON REPORTS (sections 33 to 42)