Waste is classified as being hazardous when it displays one or more of the hazardous properties listed in the Second Schedule of the Waste Management Act as amended (e.g. explosive, oxidizing, flammable, irritant, harmful, toxic, carcinogenic). The relevant property or properties are determined by testing or, where applicable, concentration-based criteria.
Under the Waste Management Act 1996, as amended, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is required to make a national hazardous waste management plan which, among other things, deals with the prevention of hazardous waste and the setting of targets towards this goal, identifying facilities currently available for the collection, recovery or disposal of hazardous wastes, and make recommendations regarding infrastructure, waste facilities and other physical resources considered to be necessary for the management of these wastes.
The EPA published a revised National Hazardous Waste Management Plan covering the period 2014-2020. This is the third plan which sets out the priorities for the next six years and beyond to improve the management of hazardous waste, taking into account the progress made since the previous plan and the waste policy and legislative changes that have occurred since the previous plan was published.