Hazardous waste management: business and industry
Read the rules and guidelines for managing hazardous and liquid industrial wastes, and find out how to report online using the Hazardous Waste Program Registry.
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New online reporting service
The regulated community is now required to report information through the Resource Productivity and Recovery Authority’s online Hazardous Waste Program Registry.
About hazardous waste
Hazardous waste is waste that, when present in quantities and concentrations that are high enough, pose a threat to human health or the environment if they are improperly stored, transported, treated or disposed.
Hazardous waste is primarily generated by industrial and manufacturing processes, and includes a broad range of materials such as:
- materials from manufacturing (for example, waste acids, contaminated sludges and chemicals)
- biomedical wastes from hospitals and other health care facilities
- waste solvents
- waste pesticides
- polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)
- industrial lubricants and oils containing heavy metals perchloroethylene (perc) waste from dry cleaners
- discarded batteries
Hazardous waste requires special handling with respect to how it is collected, stored, transported, treated, recovered and disposed to reduce adverse effects to human health and the environment.
We are committed to making producers responsible for the waste generated from their products and packaging to encourage new, innovative and cost-effective ways to recycle products and lower costs for consumers. The Municipal Hazardous or Special Waste Program transitioned to a producer responsibility model on October 1, 2021.
You can find a complete set of rules related to managing hazardous and liquid industrial wastes at:
Hazardous Waste Program Registry
Ontario’s Hazardous Waste Program ensures waste is properly:
Reporting for Ontario’s Hazardous Waste Program takes place through the Resource Productivity and Recovery Authority’s online Hazardous Waste Program Registry. This is outlined in Regulation 347: General – Waste Management.
The registry allows more than 40,000 generators, carriers and receivers of liquid industrial and hazardous waste to:
- meet their reporting requirements
- pay fees
- reduce the number of paper reports they must complete and file
The registry also helps ensure polluters are held accountable through more efficient compliance monitoring and timely enforcement actions.
The registry replaces the Hazardous Waste Information Network and paper manifests, which were used for program registration and reporting in 2022 and earlier.
The regulated community can also manifest online through RPRA HazTrack, the authority’s mobile app. The app can only be used for manifesting. You can download the app to your mobile device from the:
Access the registry
Visit the registry sign in page to sign in or create a new registry account.
For more information
Explore the following resources for more information about the registry:
- how-to videos, practice simulations, work instructions, quick reference guides
- frequently asked questions
- Hazardous Waste Program Registry webpage
If you have questions about the Hazardous Waste Program Registry, contact the authority’s Registry Support Team:
If you have questions about your regulatory requirements, email the ministry at HazardousWasteProgram@ontario.ca.
Manage hazardous wastes
The Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks has a cradle-to-grave management system for subject waste which controls:
Subject waste is a term used to identify the types of waste that must be registered with the ministry. It includes:
- liquid industrial waste (LIW)
- hazardous waste, including hazardous waste treated to remove characteristic hazards such as reactivity and ignitability
Some specific types of waste and types of facilities are exempt from the definition of subject waste as long as the facility meets specific requirements. This means you do not have the registration or manifesting requirements that apply to other hazardous waste and LIWs.
A generator is the operator of a waste generation facility. Generators include:
- the original generator of the waste (such as, operators of commercial and manufacturing facilities that produce waste)
- the operator of waste disposal, transfer, bulking or processing facility that forwards materials off-site for subsequent waste management
- a municipal hazardous or special waste (MHSW) depot
- other types not listed
All off-site movement of hazardous waste and liquid industrial waste is tracked using a digital manifest.
A digital manifest:
- accompanies the waste from its point of origin to its point of disposal, by being viewable on a device such as a tablet, mobile phone or computer
- describes the waste
- shows when it changes hands between generators, carriers and receivers
If you are a carrier or receiver of hazardous waste or liquid industrial waste, you must obtain Environmental Compliance Approvals (ECA), formerly known as a Certificate of Approval (CofA), from the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks outlining the specific conditions of your operations, including wastes you are approved to manage safely.
Get an environmental compliance approval
Waste classes are included in an approval for waste carriers or receivers to identify the waste streams they are permitted to handle or manage.
In Ontario, there are 53 waste classes that are identified by a three-digit number. Each number is assigned to a generic waste description that is used to classify the type of waste being managed.
Please refer to the registration guidance manual for more information on how to correctly choose a waste class and characterize your wastes.