Waste Blanket Wash — Watch Out for Your Wash
The last and perhaps most expensive approach would be to replace the automatic blanket wash system with one that does not use liquid. While this is not a practical option for presses that are in operation, it is something that should be considered with a new press purchase. The non-liquid systems still generate waste, but it is not the same problem. The waste from these systems must be evaluated to see if they are a hazardous waste, but the amount of waste generated from these systems is dramatically less than the liquid systems.
The advent of automatic blanket wash systems on large, multicolor sheetfed presses has allowed printers to dramatically increase productivity. Printers that have these systems are urged to review their internal program and make any necessary changes to meet USEPA and state hazardous waste regulations and take steps to minimize or eliminate this waste stream. Taking proactive steps now will allow for easier regulatory compliance and cost savings.
About the Author
Gary Jones is the manager of Environmental, Health and Safety for the Printing Industries of America/Graphic Arts Technical Foundation. He has 19 years of experience in addressing EHS issues for the printing industry. Jones can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (412) 259-1794.
Conference Coming Up
The National Environmental, Health and Safety Conference for the Graphic Communications Industries is the only national event designed to meet the needs of those responsible for environmental, health and safety (EHS) compliance, regardless of printing process. During the 11th annual event, scheduled for March 27-29 in Indianapolis, attendees will hear printer case studies and regulatory updates, examine the latest EHS technology, and be able to attend optional, low-cost, certification-level training.
More than 30 topics will be addressed, including new topics on how to “sell” safety, turn around loss experience, reduce energy usage, calculate air emissions, fill out OSHA forms and control stormwater contamination. Attendees can pick from sessions tailored to specific printing processes, and others designed for all printers. A free orientation session will help those new to managing EHS affairs understand the core issues and their job responsibilities. Certification options for 2006 have been expanded to include first-aid, OSHA’s Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response Standard (HAZWOPER), and train-the-trainer requirements for EPA’s RCRA hazardous waste regulations.
Gary A. Jones is the director of environmental, health and safety (EHS) affairs at the Specialty Graphic and Imaging Association in Fairfax, VA. His primary responsibility is to monitor and analyze EHS regulatory activities at all domestic and some international government levels. He provides representation on behalf of the printing and specialty graphic imaging industry.