Properties Of Spent Caustics

Texas Technology Corporation

Specializing in the Treatment and Disposal of Spent Caustics, Waste Caustics, Toxic Wastes and Other Hazardous Waste Streams
Servicing  Industry Since 1984

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Overview Of TEXOX Process

What Are Spent Caustics?

How Are Spent Caustics Generated?

Properties Of Spent Caustics

Disposal Characteristics Of Spent Caustics

Disposal Alternatives For Spent Caustics

Results Following Treatment

Case History

Tragedy In The Ivory Coast - What Not To Do

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SPENT CAUSTICS contain noxious odor precursors that are highly toxic to humans and to our biosphere.  Toxic and hazardous substrates removed during gas scrubbing, fuel sweetening and hydrocarbon washing end up in the spent caustic.  These compounds must be transformed into non-hazardous and non-toxic compounds before being discharged back to the environment.  The TexoxTM Process accomplishes this daunting task through responsible and cost effective treatment programs.

    SPENT CAUSTICS exhibit any or all of the following properties:
      • Toxic and Highly Odorous Components
               (TLV - Threshold Limit Value where odors are first recognized)
        • Hydrogen sulfide, TLV 10 ppb  
        • Mercaptans, TLV 4 ppb
        • Phenols, TLV 50 ppb
        • Cresols, TLV 50 ppb
        • Naphthenes, TLV Begins at 100 ppb

      • Toxic To Humans At Extremely Low Levels
      • Toxic To Biological Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTP's)
        • Industrial WWTP's, dosed at 25 mg/L, before acclimation
        • Industrial WWTP's, 100 mg/L after acclimation
        • Municipal WWTP's, 1 mg/L before acclimation
        • Municipal & POTW: 10 mg/L after acclimation
      • EPA and RCRA Hazardous Waste
        (see Code Of Federal Regulations Title 40 Environment)
        • EPA Listed Waste  (D-List, F-List, etc) 
        • EPA 129 Priority Pollutants List
        • Corrosive
        • Reactive
        • TCLP
        • Combustible (some)

      • Few Are Recyclable (without additional processing)
        • Sulfides, if >15% as sodium sulfide and organics below 300 mg/L to local Pulp Mill.
        • Free Caustic, if >15% as sodium hydroxide or potassium hydroxide

      • Few May Contain Recoverable Products
                    (Usually too costly to recover and generally a low market demand compared to virgin materials)
        • Phenols, if >15%
        • Cresols, if >35%
        • Naphthenic Acids, if >25%
        • Caustic Value, if >15%

                In one customer's earlier description,  the toxic compounds (including phenols and cresols) were intentionally captured into the spent caustic to provide a recoverable product to the third-party reclaiming company.  The only purpose to extract these valuable "octane boosters" was to reduce the cost of disposal and to prevent being listed as an EPA Hazardous Waste.  At that time, this spent caustic as labeled as "intermediate" and therefore was not not regulated by USEPA and RCRA regulations.  However, this pracetice was ended in circa 2001 and the spent caustic was then a listed hazardous waste and sugject to EPA regulations.

                Today, however, very few reclaimers are reprocessing spent caustics for the valuable aromatic hydrocarbons, free caustic, or sodium sulfide content.  As a result, these spent caustics are simply disposed by injecting into Deepwells, untreated.

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