Re: Shop Towels Again

Thu, 30 May 96 12:47:00 -0500

In answer to Scott Rays' inquiry about the Minnesota Pollution Control
Agency and their work in managing solvent contaminated printer wipers,
the USEPA Office of Solid Waste (Mr. Jim O'Leary) has been soliciting
the same type of data from interested parties (the industrial wiper
coalition, commercial laundry trade associations, for instance) as
documentation data for their development of a policy memorandum or
outright regulation addressing contaminated wipers.

Similarly, the USEPA Office of Water (Ms. Susan Burris) has been
collecting similar data in their effort to develop a Categorical
Pretreatment Standard for the Commercial Laundry industry, which must be
published by year end 1996 as a result of court order.

Personally, I suggest that traditional water-washing technologies for
solvent-laden wipers is irresponsible, and nothing more than "media
transfer", given the gross inability for commercial laundries to
properly "treat" these hazardous constituents. There is a better way -
namely industrial "dry cleaning" using petroleum solvents (mineral
spirits) with the capability to re-refine the solvents removed during
the dry cleaning process, for ultimate reuse. No effluent discharge,
media transfer, or needless exposure to plant workers during wringing,
centrifuging, or other physical separation.

The fact remains, these fluid removal techniques were developed simply
because the water-washing laundries could not meet their discharge
limits - not because some authority is demanding it from towel users, as
some of the laundries have claimed.

Contact me for plenty of printed materials relative to these different




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