The evaluation of an analytical protocol for the determination of substances in waste for hazard classification.

Abstract : The classification of waste as hazardous could soon be assessed in Europe using largely the hazard properties of its constituents, according to the the Classification, Labelling and Packaging (CLP) regulation. Comprehensive knowledge of the component constituents of a given waste will therefore be necessary. An analytical protocol for determining waste composition is proposed, which includes using inductively coupled plasma (ICP) screening methods to identify major elements and gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC-MS) screening techniques to measure organic compounds. The method includes a gross or indicator measure of 'pools' of higher molecular weight organic substances that are taken to be less bioactive and less hazardous, and of unresolved 'mass' during the chromatography of volatile and semi-volatile compounds. The concentration of some elements and specific compounds that are linked to specific hazard properties and are subject to specific regulation (examples include: heavy metals, chromium(VI), cyanides, organo-halogens, and PCBs) are determined by classical quantitative analysis. To check the consistency of the analysis, the sum of the concentrations (including unresolved 'pools') should give a mass balance between 90% and 110%. Thirty-two laboratory samples comprising different industrial wastes (liquids and solids) were tested by two routine service laboratories, to give circa 7000 parameter results. Despite discrepancies in some parameters, a satisfactory sum of estimated or measured concentrations (analytical balance) of 90% was reached for 20 samples (63% of the overall total) during this first test exercise, with identified reasons for most of the unsatisfactory results. Regular use of this protocol (which is now included in the French legislation) has enabled service laboratories to reach a 90% mass balance for nearly all the solid samples tested, and most of liquid samples (difficulties were caused in some samples from polymers in solution and vegetable oil). The protocol is submitted to French and European normalization bodies (AFNOR and CEN) and further improvements are awaited.
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Pierre Hennebert, Arnaud Papin, Jean-Marie Padox, Benoît Hasebrouck. The evaluation of an analytical protocol for the determination of substances in waste for hazard classification.. Waste Management, Elsevier, 2013, 33 (7), pp.1577-88. ⟨10.1016/j.wasman.2013.03.013⟩. ⟨ineris-00904360⟩

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