Classify your hazardous wastes and hazardous recyclable materials

How to accurately describe your goods

Environment and Climate Change Canada

Overview

A combination of domestic and internationally recognized codes are used to categorize hazardous waste and hazardous recyclable material by their:

  • composition or constituents
  • physical or chemical properties
  • how they are regulated

The following fields must be completed in the permit application:

Other codes that are required where they apply to your waste or recyclable material are:

  • Basel and OECD codes
  • Column 1 of Schedules 3, 4, 6, or 7 of the Regulation
  • Column 2 of Schedule 10 of the Regulation

Before classifying your waste or recyclables, make sure that they are considered “hazardous” under Canadian law.

Classification codes

Use the waste classificationuser guide and Appendices 1 through 8 to classify your waste. Key parts of the waste classification system are the following:

  1. The International Waste Identification Code (IWIC) has seven parts:
    Q Code*

    Describes the origins of the waste or recyclable.

    Example: Q 8 – Residues of industrial processes.

    Refer to Appendix 1.

    D Code

    Describes the type of facility or operation that will dispose of the HW.

    Example: D 10 – Incineration or thermal treatment on land

    Refer to Appendix 2.

    R Code

    Describes the type of facility or operation that will recycle the HRM.

    Example: R 4 Recovery of metals and metal compounds

    Refer to Appendix 3.

    L, P, S & G Codes

    Identifies the state of the waste/material (liquid, sludge, solid or gas) with either a generic or specific waste descriptor.

    Example 1:  L9 – Liquid: waste oil/water, hydrocarbon/water mixtures, and emulsions.  (Refer to Appendix 4 of the Classification Guide for “generic” waste descriptions.)

    Example 2:  S23 - Solid: soil, sand, or clay, including dredging spoils

    C Code*

    Identifies hazardous constituents that may be subject to specific controls.

    Example:  C 8 – Arsenic, arsenic compounds (Y24) (In this example, the reference table prescribes the Y code to be used.)

    Refer to Appendix 5.

    H Code*

    Describes hazardous characteristics.

    Example:  H 4.1 – flammable solids

    Refer to Appendix 6.

    A Code

    Describes the activity that generated the hazardous waste or recyclable material.

    Example:  A935 – Collection and/or pre-treatment of wastes

    Refer to Appendix 7.

    Y Code*

    Identifies the key waste streams or substances controlled under the Basel Convention.

    Example:  Y 1 – clinical wastes from medical care in hospitals, medical centres, and clinics.

    Refer to Appendix 8.

  2. Transportation safety codes
    UN Number

    A dangerous good identifier established by the United Nations.

    Example:  UN 1091 – Acetone Oils

    Refer to the TDGR, Schedule 1.

    TDGR Class

    One or more hazardous characteristics.  Always list the most significant category first. 

    Example:  UN 1091 is Class 3 – Flammable Liquids

    Refer to the TDGR, Schedule 31, and read Part 2 of TDGR for details.

    TDGR Packing Group/Category

    This identifies the degree of risk of transporting the goods.

    Example:  UN 1091 is Packing Group II - medium danger

  3. Customs tarriff codes

    Always refer to the most recent and relevant customs tariff codes published online, as they change over time.

Examples

Example 1: Spent sulphuric acid (for import from an OECD member country, destined for recycling under paragraph 8(j) of the Regulations)

  1. IWIC: Q7//R06//L40//C23//H8.0//A162//Y34
  2. Basel Code: N/A
  3. OECD Code: A4090
  4. Commodity Code: HS 2807.00.00.00
  5. ID Number: N/A
  6. TDGR Information: UN1832, Class 8, PG II
  7. R or D Code: R06 - Regeneration of acids or bases
  8. POPs: N/A

Example 2: Contaminated soil consisting mainly of arsenic and mercury and a little bit of lead (for import from an non-OECD member country, destined for disposal under paragraph 8(j) of the Regulations)

  1. IWIC: Q15//D9//S23//C8+C16+C18//H13//A200//Y24+Y29+Y31
  2. Basel Code: A1030
  3. OECD Code: N/A
  4. Commodity Code: 2620.60.00.00
  5. ID Number: L4 (note: the leachate code for arsenic is more important (as the “C” codes order is showing) than the leachate code for lead, so L4 is used instead of L17)
  6. TDGR Information: UN3077, Class 9, PG III
  7. D Code: D9 – Physical or chemical treatment not otherwise referred to in this schedule, such as calcinations, neutralization, or precipitation
  8. POPs: N/A

Example 3: Spent lead-acid batteries (for import from an non-OECD member country, destined for disposal under paragraph 8(j) of the Regulations)

  1. IWIC: Q6+7//R13//S38//C18+C23//H8//A842//Y31+Y34
  2. Basel Code: N/A
  3. OECD Code: A1160
  4. Commodity Code: 8548.10.90.10
  5. ID Number: N/A
  6. TDGR Information: UN2794, Class 8, PG N/A
  7. R Code: R13 – Accumulation prior to recycling by any operations R1 to R10 or R14. Note that if the “D” or “R” code is an interim operation, the final disposal or recycling operation must also be indicated and linked to the authorized facilities that will perform them – see box 5 on the notice form); R4 – Recovery of metals or metal compounds
  8. POPs: N/A

Example 4: Non-halogenated waste organic solvent containing cyanide (for import from non-OECD member country, destined for disposal under paragraph 8(j) of the Regulations)

  1. IWIC: Q07//D09//L06//C38+42//H3+6.1//A871//Y06+Y38+Y42
  2. Basel Code: A3140 (note: A3140 is used here because it is more consistent with the leachate code ”L06” instead of having A4050 match with the C38 code)
  3. OECD Code: N/A
  4. Commodity Code: 3825.49.00.00
  5. ID Number: HAZ4
  6. TDGR Information: UN1992, Class 3 (6.1), PG I,II,III
  7. D Code: D09 – Physical or chemical treatment not otherwise referred to in this schedule, such as calcinations, neutralization, or precipitation
  8. POPs: N/A

Contact us

By mail

Waste Reduction and Management Division
351 St. Joseph Boulevard, 9th Floor
Gatineau, QC K1A 0H3

By FAX

Notice 819-938-4553
Movements 819-938-4554

By phone

Notice 1-844-524-5295
Movements 1-844-524-5295

Guides and help

Contact us

Related services and information

Service standard

Related programs

Date modified: