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    Reports / Documents - A Note On Implementation Of Environmentally Sound Technologies For Re-Refining /     Recycling of Used Oil/Waste Oil

1 Background

The Hazardous Wastes (Management & Handling) Rules, as amended on May 20, 2003, have come into force from the date of their publication in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary, Part II (3) (ii) No. 471 dated May 23, 2003. As per Rule 21 of HW Rules, it is mandatory that re-refining/recycling of the used oil/waste oil is done only through application of environmentally sound technologies (EST’s). Existing industries are required to switch over within six months from the date of commencement of the HW Rules to other EST’s mentioned in the HW Rules.

As per Rule 4, it shall be the responsibility of the occupier and the operator of a facility, to take all steps to ensure that the wastes listed in schedules-1, 2 and 3 of the HW Rules, are properly handled and disposed of without any adverse effects to the environment. He will also take adequate steps while handling the hazardous wastes to -

(i) Contain contaminants and prevent accidents and limit their consequences on human and the environment; and
(ii) provide persons working on the site with information, training and equipment necessary to ensure their safety.
2 Environmentally Sound Technologies (EST’s)
Rule 21 provides for the technology and standards for re-refining/recycling of used oil/waste oil in an environmentally sound manner. EST’s stipulated in the HW Rules are as under:
(i) Vacuum distillation with clay treatment
(ii) Thin-film evaporation process
(iii) Vacuum distillation hydrotreating
(iv) Any technology approved by the MoEF.

The approved technologies and standards have distinctive advantages such as :

(a) The re-refining/recycling is done without adding any chemicals or other substances, which can increase the quantity or toxicity of waste generated in the whole process.
(b) The quality of products are of accepted standards for the purposes for which they are intended.
  Process flow diagrams for the above ESTs are placed at Annex I to Annex III. Comparison of ESTs (i & ii as above) in terms of yield, energy consumption, waste streams etc. is presented below:

Factors for Evaluation Vacuum distillation with clay treatment Thin-film evaporation process
Lube Yield Fairly High Fairly High
Utilities consumption Low Low
Energy consumption Low Low
Process Continuous Continuous
Hazardous chemicals None None
Acid sludge None None
Spent coagulant clay None None
Spent alumina clay 3% 3%
Process water Low Low
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3 Important Definitions
In the Rules, unless the context otherwise requires -
(i) “environmentally sound management of hazardous wastes” means taking all steps required to ensure that the hazardous wastes are managed in a manner which will protect health and the environment against the adverse effects which may result from such wastes;
(ii) "recycling of waste oil" means reclamation by way of treatment to separate solids and water from waste oils using methods such as heating, filtering, gravity settling, centrifuging, dehydration, viscosity and specific gravity adjustment;
(iii) "re-refining of used oil" means applying a process to the material composed of used oil so as to produce high quality base stock for further manufacture of lubricants or for other petroleum products by blending or any other process;
(iv) “used oil” means any oil -
  (a) derived from crude oil or mixtures containing synthetic oil including used engine oil, gear oil, hydraulic oil, turbine oil, compressor oil, industrial gear oil, heat transfer oil, transformer oil, spent oil and their tank bottom sludges; and
  (b) suitable for re-refining if it meets the specifications laid down in Schedule 5 (Annex IV), but does not include waste oil;
(v) “waste oil” means any oil -
  (a) which includes spills of crude oil, emulsions, tank bottom sludge and slop oil generated from petroleum refineries, installations or ships; and
  (b) is unsuitable for re-refining, but can be used as fuel in furnaces if it meets the specifications laid down in Schedule 6 (Annex V);
(vi) “registered re-refiner or recycler” means a re-refiner or recycler registered for reprocessing wastes with the Ministry of Environment and Forests or the Central Pollution Control Board, as the case may be, for reprocessing wastes;
Responsibility of the Waste Generator

Rule 20 of HW Rules, 2003, provides responsibilities of the waste generator which inter-alia include stipulations regarding permitted quantity for storage, time frame for disposal, specifications of waste oil etc. Details are as under :
(i) No owner or occupier generating used oil or waste oil of ten tons or more per annum shall sell or auction such used oil or waste oil except to a registered re-refiner or recycler, who undertakes to
re-refine or recycle the waste within the period of validity of his certificate of registration.
(ii) Any waste oil which does not meet the specifications laid down in Schedule 6 shall not be auctioned or sold but shall be disposed of in hazardous wastes incinerator installed with air pollution control devices and meeting emission standards.
(iii) The persons generating waste or auctioneers shall ensure that at the time of auction or sale, the period of validity of the certificate of registration of the registered re-refiner or recycler is sufficient to reprocess the quantity of used oil/waste oil being sold or auctioned to him.
(iv) The waste generators and auctioneers shall ensure that the wastes are not allowed to be stored for more than ninety days and shall maintain a record of auctions and sale of such wastes and make these records available to the State Pollution Control Board or Committee for inspections.
(v) The waste generators and auctioneers shall file annual returns of auction and sale in Form-13 latest by 31st day of January of every year to the respective State Pollution Control Board or Committee.
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5 Disposal of Wastes From Various Processes of Re-Refinning Used Oil/ Waste Oil
(i) Waste Residual Oil (from vacuum distillation & thin film evaporation processes)

(a) Used oil contains largely base oil, degraded additives, carbon, water and in some cases metallic compounds in ppm. Used oil processing in vacuum distillation process is done under varying vacuum and temperature. The maximum temperature used is 350 degree centigrade and vacuum of 2 Torr. Under this condition, the water, base oil and some of the bright stock is recovered and the residue will contain the rest of the component of used oil. In this case of used oil collected in the country, the quantity of residue is 12 to 15 percent, whereas good quality used oil may give less than 10% residue.

The typical analysis of residue indicate contents such as:

 Bright Stock
  Metal Compounds

There is good market potential for using this residue as a masticating agent in rubber industries manufacturing mats, flaps, beadings etc. In Kerala & Tamilnadu alone the demand is to the tune of 5000 MT per year. These industries are using pine tar and other expensive substitutes, as they are unable to meet their demand.

(b) The application of the residue, commercially known as “Flap Oil”, is as under:
Rubber is mixed with Clay, Silicon, Carbon etc., and in order to aid this mixing, Flap Oil is added as a masticating agent. The mixing takes place at 80 to 150 degree C depending on the type of product. Since the Flap Oil is a produce distilled at around 350 degree C at Torr, the mixing temperature of 150 degree will not affect the Flap Oil. The metallic compounds in the Flap Oil is permanently impregnated to the rubber and is rendered harmless.
The residue can also be used as asphalt extender. In such application, the residue will get embedded in the tarmac. The quantity of residue produced should be large enough for contemplating such methods of disposal.
It is to be stressed that the residue being produced in processes such as Vacuum Distillation or Thin Film Evaporation are having commercial application for disposal in a safe manner. Whereas, the hazardous wastes generated in processes such as Acid/Clay or Coagulant/Clay (Acid free) do not have commercial application due to harmful contaminants present in the residue and therefore the disposal is to be carried out by incineration.

(i) Spent Clay

The base oil produced from waste oil is subjected to Activated Alumina Clay treatment. The purpose of this treatment is to improve the colour of base oil. In the process, the clay absorbs traces of aromatics and oxidized oil present in the base oil. This alumina clay got good bonding properties and is used in mixing with rubber in the manufacture of rubber mats. This has also got application to mix the same with the clay used for brick manufacture. In the case of Vacuum Distillation Process and thin Film Evaporation Process, the pH of the Spent Clay is 7.5 and therefore this can be safely used in the above application. This mode of disposal of residue and clay became possible due to the fact that no acid is used in the waste oil reprocessing and hence the base oil remain neutral. Whereas in the case of Acid/Clay process, the base oil is highly acidic and neutralization is done by excessive use of clay and the pH for this clay is normally below 6. Hence the spent clay from Acid/Clay Process may not be suitable for mixing with brick clay. This must be incinerated @ 1200oC + 100oC with proper air pollution control equipment.

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6 Packaging, Labelling And Transport Of Hazardous Wastes.
(i) The occupier or operator of a facility shall ensure that the hazardous wastes are packaged, based on the composition in a manner suitable for handling, storage and transport and the labelling and packaging shall be easily visible and be able to withstand physical conditions and climatic factors.
(ii) Packaging, labelling and transport of hazardous wastes shall be in accordance with the provisions of the rules made by the Central Government under the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 and other guidelines issued from time to time.
(iii) All hazardous waste containers shall be provided with a general label as given in Form 8 of HW Rules.
(iv) The occupier shall prepare six copies of the manifest in Form 9 of HW Rules comprising of colour code indicated below (all six copies to be signed by the transporter):

Copy number with colour code Purpose
Copy 1 (white) to be forwarded by the occupier to the State Pollution Control Board or Committee
Copy 2 (yellow) to be retained by the occupier after taking signature on it from the transporter and rest of the four copies to be carried by the transporter
Copy 3 (pink) to be retained by the operator of the facility after signature
Copy 4 (orange) to be returned to the transporter by the operator of facility after accepting waste
Copy 5 (green) to be returned by the operator of the facility to State Pollution Control Board/Committee after treatment and disposal of wastes
Copy 6 (blue) to be returned by the operator of the facility to the occupier after treatment and disposal of wastes
(v) The occupier shall forward copy number 1 (white) to the State Pollution Control Board or Committee and in case the hazardous waste is likely to be transported through any transit State, the occupier shall prepare an additional copy each for such State and forward the same to the concerned State Pollution Control Board or Committee before he hands over the hazardous waste to the transporter. No transporter shall accept hazardous wastes from an occupier for transport unless it is accompanied by copy numbers 2 to 5 of the manifest. The transporter shall return copy number 2 (yellow) of the manifest signed with date to the occupier as token of receipt of the other four copies of the manifest and retain the remaining four copies to be carried and handed over to respective agencies as specified in sub-rule (4).
(vi) In case of transport of hazardous wastes to a facility for treatment, storage and disposal existing in a State other than the State where hazardous wastes are generated, the occupier shall obtain 'No Objection Certificate' from the State Pollution Control Board or Committee of the concerned State or Union territory Administration where the facility is existing.
(vii) The occupier shall provide the transporter with relevant information in Form 10 of HW Rules, regarding the hazardous nature of the wastes and measures to be taken in case of an emergency.
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  Annexure IV
Schedule - 5*
[See rule 3 (34)]
Specifications for Used oil Suitable for Re-refining
Sr. No. Parameter Maximum Permissible Limit
1 2 3
1 Colour 8 hazen units
2 Water 15%
3 Density 0.85 to 0.95
4 Kinemetic Viscosity cSt at 100°C 1.0 to 32
5 Dilutents 15% vol.
6 Neutralisation No. 3.5 mg KOH/g
7 Saponification value 18 mg KOH/g
8 Total halogens 4000 ppm
9 Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) Below detection limit
10 Lead 100 ppm
11 Arsenic 5 ppm
12 Cadmium+Chromium+ Nickle
13 Polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) 6%
  Annexure V
Schedule – 6
[See rule 3(35) and 20(2)]
Specifications for Waste Oil Suitable for Recycling
Sr. No. Parameter Limit
1 2 3
1 Sediment 5% (maximum)
2 Heavy Metals
605 ppm maximum
3 Polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) 6% maximum
4 Total halogens 4000 ppm maximum
5 Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) Below Detection Limit
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