Sweeping debris is not potentially contaminated materials removed from spill sites, hazardous waste cleanup sites, city streets, parking ramps, parking garages, parking lots and other areas.

What Does “Sweeping Debris” Consist Of?

Sweeping debris consists of materials such as sand, salt, leaves and debris removed from driving or walking surfaces.

At Scrub n Shine, we use Minnesota Best Practices in disposing of these materials to prevent them from being washed into storm sewers and surface waters.

Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) Regulates the Disposal of Sweeping Debris

Materials from these sources, whether removed by sweeping or other process, must be tested to determine if they are hazardous. If hazardous, they must be managed according to MPCA hazardous waste requirements.

Reusing Sweeping Debris

Test results have shown sweeping debris from normal sweeping operations are safe and acceptable for reuse in many areas.

The Following Areas Cannot Be Used for Street Sweeping Disposal

· Playgrounds
· Children’s play areas
· Residential yards
· Areas where human contact occurs on a continuous basis
· Areas near drinking water wells
· Wellhead protection areas for public drinking-water supplies
· Sites with karst features, including sinkholes, disappearing streams and caves

In addition, do not dispose of sweeping debris in or near wetlands or surface water.

What Must Be Done to Sweeping Debris Before It is Reused

Prior to reuse, trash, leaves and other debris must be removed from the sweepings.

Dispose of trash and debris removed from the sweepings by:
· Recycling, such as aluminum cans;
· Composting, such as leaves; or
· Sending to a Municipal Solid Waste Landfill (MSW) immediately after being screened.

Screening Sweepings After Trash, Leaves and Other Debris is Removed

When screening sweepings for reuse, use a ¾-inch mesh screen, for the final screening to ensure all of the debris has been removed.

Screened Sweepings are Exempt From Minnesota Solid Waste Storage Standards

If sweepings are screened prior to being stockpiled, they are exempt from Minnesota solid waste storage standards. Prior to reuse, screened sweepings must be managed in accordance with Best Management Practices outlined in the site’s Industrial Stormwater Permit (if applicable).

Sweepings That Are Not Screened Are Considered Industrial Solid Waste

Sweepings that are not screened for trash and debris are considered industrial solid waste and must be disposed of at a permitted solid waste facility that can accept the waste. Unscreened sweepings must also be stored in accordance with solid waste storage standards (Minn. R. 7035.2855).

Screened Sweepings Can Be Reused in a Number of Ways Without MPCA Approval

1. Mix with new salt/sand mixture for winter application to roads, parking lots or sidewalks.

When screening sweepings for reuse in this way, use a smaller mesh like a ¾-inch screen, for the final screening to ensure all of the debris has been removed.

2. Use as daily cover material at a permitted solid waste landfill, provided that the landfill is approved to use sweepings as Alternate Daily Cover (ADC).

Contact the permitted landfill prior to transportation to ensure that it can be accepted for disposal, or used as ADC.

3. Use as material in commercial and industrial development projects, road restoration or construction projects.

When reusing sweepings as fill, ensure the separation distances given in Table 1 are maintained.

Separation Distances for Using Sweepings as Fill

Separation Distances for Using Sweepings as Fill

Also, check to see if local regulations limit the depth of the fill that may be applied. It is the MPCA’s intention that the fill will be used for an
engineered purpose. Otherwise this use would be considered disposal of a solid waste without a permit.

To prevent erosion, seed the area with a grass mixture and/or cover with mulch or other cover material within the time frames given in Table 2.

MPCA Requirements for Cover Material

MPCA Requirements for Cover Material

More Information on Minnesota Best Practices of Sweeping Debris is Available

A report entitled, “Best Practices: Street Sweepings,” which provides information on efficient and economical ways to conduct sweeping operations, is available from the Metropolitan Council.

To request a copy, call the Metropolitan Council Data Center at 651-602-1140 or send an email to data.center@metc.state.mn.us.

Scrub n Shine uses MPCA Best Practices and screens sweeping debris. Contact us to discuss your situation!

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