Shop Towel Rule Enacted!


EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy signed the long-anticipated EPA wiper rule on July 23, and during a coalition meeting the following day, TRSA thanked EPA Deputy Administrator Bob Perciasepe for the agency’s decision to make the wiper rule a reality.

TRSA has consistently advocated in favor of the wipers rule since it was first proposed on Nov. 20, 2003. Over the years, the association has on several occasions provided detailed comments to federal officials on this issue.

The final rule modifies the hazardous-waste management regulations for solvent contaminated wipes under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).

This rule revises the definition of solid waste to conditionally exclude solvent contaminated wipes that are cleaned and reused. It also revises the definition of hazardous waste to conditionally exclude disposable solvent-contaminated wipes.

Wipes are used with solvents for cleaning and other purposes by tens of thousands of facilities in numerous industrial sectors, such as printers, automobile repair shops and manufacturers of automobiles, electronics, furniture and chemicals. Commercial laundries handle, wash and return clean wipes to their customers as part of the industrial laundry business.

The final rule excludes wipes that are contaminated with solvents listed as hazardous wastes under RCRA, provided that they are cleaned or disposed of properly. The EPA estimates that the final rule will result in a net savings of $18 million per year in avoided regulatory costs and between $3.7 million and $9.9 million per year in other expected benefits, including pollution prevention, waste minimization and fire prevention benefits.

Release date: 08/15/2013

Contact: Jerry Martin, V.P. of Sales & Marketing (949) 250-4850 ext 275

Source: WTSA Newsletter August 2013, Volume VIII, Issue VIII -

By: Western Textile Services Association - WTSA

About the author

Jerry Martin is the Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Prudential Overall Supply, a leading provider of workplace uniforms and personal protective equipment (PPE) to a wide range of industries and organizations. Currently a board member for the American Reusable Textile Association (ARTA) where he works on projects to further the benefits of reusable textiles versus disposable alternatives. Martin also contributes to the Textile Rental Service Association (TRSA) where he is a former chairman of the association's Marketing & PR committee and helped establish TRSA’s international standard for its Clean Green certification program.