Michael Theodore
Livingston Consulting
300 Meridian Corporate Park
3636 23rd Street, NE
Calgary, Alberta T2E 8Z5

RE: Request for a Classification, Country of Origin and Marking Ruling

Dear Mr. Theodore:

This letter is in response to your request dated September 13, 2007, for a Classification, Country of Origin and Marking Ruling Letter, on behalf of US Ecology Idaho, Inc., under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). This request was made in accordance with Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Regulations Part 177 (19 CFR 177).


US Ecology Idaho, Inc., a subsidiary of American Ecology Corporation has been subcontracted to import and dispose of approximately 6,700 tons of Depleted Uranium contaminated soil from Kuwait. MKM Engineers, Inc. (MKM) was contracted by the Kuwait Ministry of Defense, to segregate, characterize and repackage the Depleted Uranium contaminated soil for secured disposal in the United States. According to MKM’s report the contaminated soil is the result of a major fire which occurred at the U.S. Army Camp Doha base in 1991. During the Camp Doha fire, U.S. Army Depleted Uranium (DU) munitions known as DU Penetrators or DU tank Penetrators rounds, were burned and the residue thereof seeped into the soil at Camp Doha in Kuwait. After excavating the soil, the waste material was segregated and sifted to remove any remaining DU Penetrator fragments, shrapnel and other large DU contaminated debris. Soil with high levels of radioactive concentration were removed from the subject waste material.

According to reports from several federal regulatory bodies, the subject contaminated soil is either in compliance with or exempt from the jurisdiction of federal agencies which govern nuclear and radioactive materials. The maximum radioactivity remaining from the MKM segregation process was 134 pCi/g with an average activity of 10 pCi/g or 0.003% uranium by weight. According to the Department of Transportation (DOT) such low levels of radioactive waste relieve this material from being deemed a “radioactive shipment.” Radioactive materials are DOT exempt where the depleted uranium concentrations are below 27 pCi/g. Likewise, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has determined that the waste material is not considered to be “mixed waste” of the type regulated by the EPA. Similarly, the U.S. Army Joint Munitions Command applied for and received an Approval Letter from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) granting a General Import License and exempting this material from a Specific Import License pursuant to 10 C.F.R. §110.27 (c). TAC No. J00807, Approval Letter, NRC (September 13, 2007). In certain situations a Specific Import license is required by the NRC to import radioactive waste. In this case, the NRC determined that the DU contaminated soil was NRC exempt and did not pose an unreasonable risk to public health and safety.

Depleted uranium, as distinct from natural or enriched uranium, contains less than 0.711% U-235 or (three times less U-235 than natural uranium) and therefore is 60% less radioactive than natural uranium. The NRC determined that the Camp Doha waste material contains “Unimportant Quantities of Source Material” pursuant to 10 C.F.R. §40.13 (i.e. less than 0.05% uranium by weight). TAC No. J00807, ”Unimportant Quantities, NRC (September 13, 2007). This waste material contains 85% or more sand contaminated by low levels of depleted uranium. According to the MKM’s soil scientist, it is scientifically referred to as “Sandy Soil” rather than sand. The subject contaminated soil shall be imported in 5,200 DOT approved Industrial Package Level-1 (IP-1) containers also referred to as “Super Sacks.” Because of the low concentrations of radioactive material, DOT does not require the IP-1 bags to be placarded with radioactive signage. The waste material is scheduled for disposal at the US Ecology Hazardous and Radioactive Waste Treatment & Disposal Facility in Idaho and is not fit for use or the subject of any further commercial use or resale.


Whether the subject material is classified as sand under heading 2505 HTSUS, as a mineral substance under heading 2530, HTSUS, as radioactive material under heading 2844, HTSUS, or as other waste in heading 3825, HTSUS. Also whether the subject material is exempt from country of origin and marking requirements.


Classification under the HTSUS is made in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). GRI 1 provides that the classification of goods shall be determined according to the terms of the headings of the tariff schedule and any relative section or chapter notes. In the event that the goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, and if the headings and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRIs 2 through 6 may then be applied in order. In light of the fact that this material consists of several components which in addition to the residual concentrations of depleted uranium, include soil and sand, not specifically provided for at the heading level, it cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1.

GRI 2 (b) provides that “[a]ny reference in a heading to a material or substance shall be taken to include a reference to mixtures or combinations of that material or substance with other materials or substances…[t]he classification of goods consisting of more than one material or substance shall be classified according to GRI 3.”

GRI 3 (a) provides that when a good is classifiable in two or more headings, for any reason, the heading which provides the most specific description is preferred to headings providing a more general description. However, if each heading refers to only part of the materials or substances contained in the mixed or composite good at issue, then the headings are regarded as equally specific and resort must be made to GRI 3 (b), that is, classification becomes dependent upon the material, substance or component of the good that imparts its essential character.

The HTSUS provisions under consideration are as follows: 2505 Natural sands of all kinds, whether or not colored, other than metal bearing sands of chapter 26:

2530 Mineral substances not elsewhere specified or included: 2844 Radioactive chemical elements and radioactive isotopes (including the fissle or fertile chemical elements and isotopes) and their compounds; mixtures and residues containing these products:

2844.30 Uranium depleted in U235 and its compounds; thorium and its compounds; alloys, dispersions (including cermets), ceramic products and mixtures containing uranium depleted in U235, thorium or compounds of these products:

2844.40 Radioactive elements and isotopes and compounds other than those of subheadings 2844.10, 2844.20, 2844.30; alloys, dispersions (including cermets), ceramic products and mixtures containing these elements, isotopes or compounds; radioactive residues

3825 Residual products of the chemical or allied industries, not elsewhere specified or included; municipal waste; sewage sludge; other wastes specified in note 6 to this chapter:

3825.50 Wastes of metal-pickling liquors, hydraulic fluids, brake fluids and anti-freeze fluids

Other wastes from the chemical or allied industries: 3825.61.00 Mainly containing organic constituents 3825.69.00 Other 3825.90.00 Other

* * *

The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes (ENs) constitute the official interpretation of the Harmonized System at the international level. While not legally binding nor dispositive, the ENs provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the HTSUS and are generally indicative of the proper interpretation of these headings. See T.D. 89-80.

CLASSIFICATION - Camp Doha DU Contaminated Soil

Uranium contaminated soil resulting from various industrial activities, nuclear testing facilities and controlled military operations is a fairly common occurrence. Likewise, the disposal of such waste material often presents itself in both international and domestic arenas. For example, in 2005, the Japan Nuclear Cycle Development Institute sought to import some 290 cubic meters of uranium contaminated soil which resulted from uranium test-drilling into the U.S. for refining and disposal. Also, DU contaminated soil resulting from the controlled military testing of DU Penetrators was the topic of a 1997 NRC decision regarding the U.S. Department of Defense Aberdeen testing facility and its safe remediation of DU contaminated soil. Similarly, military operations involving DU Penetrators resulted in DU contaminated soil in Iraq during the Gulf War. Additionally, Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (NORM) also referred to as NORM waste is frequently found in geological formations and is brought to the surface during oil and gas drilling activities. Because of the radioactive elements found in NORM, disposal of NORM waste is somewhat similar to the disposal of low-level radioactive waste.

At issue here is the disposal of DU contaminated soil resulting from the Camp Doha fire in Kuwait. CBP does not distinguish between DU contaminated soil resulting from an accidental event such as the Camp Doha fire and a purposeful operation such as DU Munitions testing. For purposes of classification, DU contaminated soil is a low-level radioactive waste material which can result from an industrial activity, nuclear reactor operation, DU munitions testing or a DU munitions meltdown. In the case of DU munitions operations, depleted uranium from the DU Penetrators dissolves and becomes embedded into the soil. In either case, the soil becomes contaminated with residual quantities of depleted uranium.

Heading 2844, HTSUS, Radioactive Chemical Elements and Radioactive Isotopes and Their Compounds; Mixtures & Residues Containing These Products

Because the subject waste material contains low levels of radioactive source materials, one possible classification is in heading 2844, HTSUS, which provides for: “[r]adioactive chemical elements and radioactive isotopes…and their compounds; mixtures and residues containing these products[.]” Heading 2844 lists, among other things, radioactive chemical elements, radioactive isotopes, natural uranium, enriched uranium and depleted uranium, as being radioactive chemical elements and isotopes which are properly classifiable in this heading.

Additional U.S. Note 6 (f) to Chapter 28 states in pertinent part that “[h]eading 2844 applies only to: (6) [r]adioactive residues whether or nor usable.” However, the Explanatory Notes of heading 2844, HTSUS, preclude classification of DU contaminated soil in this heading. Explanatory Note (III) (B) states that: [r]adioactive chemical elements fall…in this heading, even when mixed…with non-radioactive materials…, provided that the specific radioactivity of the product is greater than 74 Bq/g (or 0.002µ Ci/g). Although the subject material is a radioactive element mixed with a non-radioactive material (sand and soil), the quantities of source material averages only 10 pCi/g. 10 pCi/g (picogram/cubic picometers) is equal to 0.00001µ Ci/g (microgram/cubic picometers). Hence, the radioactivity is far less than the minimum requirement of heading 2844, HTSUS.

Yet certain radioactive compounds are classifiable in this heading even where the radioactivity is below 74 Bq/g. EN (III) (C) to heading 2844, HTSUS, states that:

Inorganic or organic [radioactive] compounds, chemically or otherwise constituted of radioactive chemical elements or radioactive isotopes, and solutions thereof, still fall in this heading, even if the specific radioactivity of these compounds or solutions is below 74 Bq/g (0.002 µCi/g).

However, regarding mixtures and residues containing radioactive substances or elements, EN (III) (C) to heading 2844 states that:

…mixtures [and residues] containing radioactive substances (elements, isotopes or compounds thereof) fall in this heading if their specific radioactivity is greater than 74 Bq/g (0.002 µCi/g).

As previously stated, the radioactive residue or mixture of DU contaminated soil contains 0.00001µ Ci/g, over 100 times less than required in heading 2844, HTSUS. Moreover, the Explanatory Notes to heading 2844 suggests that radioactive elements, compounds or the mixtures thereof, are classifiable in this heading where there is some industrial or commercial use other than waste disposal. The subject material is designated for disposal and has no further commercial value. Accordingly, heading 2844, HTSUS, is not applicable to this waste material.

Heading 2530, HTSUS, Mineral Substances Not Elsewhere Specified Or Included. Heading 2505, HTSUS, Natural Sands of All Kinds

You contend that this DU contaminated soil should be classified in heading 2530, HTSUS, which provides for “mineral substances not elsewhere specified or included.” You argue that the DU contaminated soil is a mixture of sand and other mineral substances and thus could, prima facie, be classified in either heading 2530, HTSUS, or 2505, HTSUS, which provides for “[n]atural sands all kinds, whether or not colored, other than metal-bearing sands of chapter 26.” As such, you assert that pursuant to GRI 3(b), it is the soil not the depleted uranium which imparts the essential character of this material. We disagree. The U.S. Court of International Trade has defined essential character as “that which is indispensable to the structure, core or condition of the article, i.e. what it is.” Structural Industries, Inc. v. United States, 360 F. Supp. 2d 1330, Court of International Trade, 2005. The Court further noted that the component which imparts an article’s essential character is that which is indispensable to performing the article’s primary purpose. Id.

Clearly it is the residual quantities of depleted uranium which impart the essential character of this waste material. The primary purpose or objective of this importation is the secured disposal of the DU contaminated waste material at a low-level radioactive waste disposal facility. The waste material is not being imported or disposed of because it is a mineral substance, but rather because the soil is contaminated with low concentrations of radioactive material. Hence it is the residue of spent DU munitions which impart the primary purpose of the material’s importation and disposal. Although scientific methods exist to extract depleted uranium from contaminated soil through a process called “soil washing,” such soil remediation is largely done so to counter offsite disposal costs incurred by the traditional excavation, packaging and burial method of disposal. Thus, it cannot be said that DU contaminated soil offers any further commercial use. This material is beyond the scope of heading 2530, HTSUS, and we find that such waste material cannot be considered a mineral substance as contemplated by Chapter 25.

Note 1 to Chapter 25 states in pertinent part that:

Except where their context…otherwise requires, the headings of this chapter cover only products which are in their crude state…but not products which have been…obtained by mixing or subjected to processing beyond that mentioned in each heading.

First, it cannot be said that the subject contaminated soil is in its crude state or that it has not been obtained by a mixing or further processing. The mere fact that the soil was contaminated by the trace presence of depleted uranium demonstrates that this “sandy soil” is the result of a mixing and/or processing. As such this “sandy soil” is excluded from classification in heading 2505, HTSUS, and heading 2530, HTSUS. Secondly, DU contaminated soil is not ejusdem generis, which means literally, “of the same class or kind,” of the articles enumerated eo nomine in heading 2530, HTSUS. The Explanatory Notes to heading 2530, HTSUS, list several mineral substances which include: (2) Alunite, employed in the manufacture of alum, (7) Pozzolana used in cement manufacturing, (8) Limestone, used in the printing industry, (10) Ores of rare earth, used to extract uranium, (13) Nsutite a manganese ore, used in the metallurgical industry and (14) Natural cryolite, used in the production of aluminum. Of the articles enumerated in heading 2530, HTSUS, each has the capacity for further commercial or industrial use and none are described as being contaminated with any toxic, hazardous or radioactive impurities.

It is further argued that because this material contains less than 0.05% uranium by weight that it should be considered a mineral substance rather than be classified according to the presence of depleted uranium. CBP finds such reasoning to be flawed. Although Explanatory Note (D)(6) to heading 2530, covers: [g]arden earth…excavated soil and subsoil, EN (D)(6) also states that such are the types of soil used in agriculture or landscaping. As such, nothing included in the description of the subject waste material or its designated secured disposal, persuades CBP that this DU contaminated soil will be used for any agricultural or landscape purposes as contemplated by EN (D)(6).

Heading 3825, HTSUS, Other Waste of the Chemical or Allied Industries

In 2001, Presidential Proclamation 7515, issued pursuant to the Omnibus Trade and Competitive Act of 1988, created heading 3825, HTSUS, to cover environmentally sensitive and hazardous waste products. In HQ 967288, dated March 10, 2005, we noted that Chapter 38 was suggested by the U.S. to track certain environmentally sensitive substances important to international trade. Likewise, the 32nd Session of the Harmonized System Committee of the World Customs Organization addressed the Transboundary Movement of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal as set forth during the Basel Convention. During the 32nd Session, the committee discussed heading 3825, HS and its coverage of categories of wastes and residual products of the chemical and allied industries.

CBP has consistently classified chemically or otherwise contaminated waste material under heading 3825. For example, in NY Ruling Letter R03953, dated June 2, 2006, we classified “oily debris waste,” which among other things included sand contaminated with hydrocarbons, in heading 3825, HTSUS. Likewise, NY B89442, classified hazardous chemical waste material being imported into the U.S. for incineration as other residual products of the chemical and allied industries. We stated in HQ 967288 that the term “residual products” of the chemical and allied industries are not limited to environmentally sensitive wastes which can be remediated into a useful product but also encompasses toxic wastes such as alkaline iron oxide and filter cakes which are usually discarded and disposed of in landfills.

CBP has turned to 19 U.S.C. § 1313 (b) concerning distinctions between waste and articles that have been manufactured or produced. Here waste is recognized as something rejected as worthless or not needed, surplus or useless; especially the refuse of a manufacturing or industrial process. In the tariff sense, waste is a term which includes manufactured articles which have become useless for the original purpose for which they were made and fit only for remanufacture into something else. Harley Co. v. United States, 14 Ct. Cust. App. 112, T.D. 41644 (1926). Yet, remanufacture is not an absolute requirement for classification as waste. United States v. Studner, 57 CCPA 122, C.A.D. 990, 427 F. 2d 819 (1970). It also includes refuse, surplus or unsought residuum derived from the original material. (Harley Co., at 112,115).

Accordingly, waste falls under two distinct categories: residual by-products of a manufacturing or industrial process or residual refuse suitable only for disposal. On one hand, by-products are new articles different from the original materials which have specific uses in their own right. Precision Specialty Metals, Inc. v. United States, 116 F. Supp. 2d 1350, (24 CIT 1016). In that sense, residual by-products can be considered “valuable waste.” (Id.) Whereas waste has “neither the qualities of the starting materials or the qualities of an article that is sought or purposely produced.” (Precision Specialty Metals, Inc. at 1369, citing C.S.D. 82-109 (1982), 16 Cust. B. & Dec. 882, at 884,).

The subject waste material throughout its life cycles and stages of transformation has characteristics of each category, by-products (valuable waste) and residual refuse (waste). Depleted uranium itself is a residual waste product of the uranium enrichment process. It is the remaining by-product of the process by which most of the usable U-235 and U-234 radioactive isotopes have been removed to create nuclear reactor fuel. Standing alone, DU is a valuable or reusable waste of the residual by-product type which requires further remanufacturing to become commercially useful. Because of its strength and density it is salvageable to develop aircraft counterweights, plating on armored vehicles and tank piercing munitions. However, once spent, e.g. following DU Penetrator testing or after a DU munitions meltdown, it becomes waste of the refuse type, useful only for destruction or disposal.

In either case, the subject DU contaminated soil is residual waste product which is substantially similar to those articles enumerated in heading 3825, HTSUS. The Harmonized System Review Sub-Committee’s draft amendment for heading 3825, subsequently adopted by Presidential Proclamation 7515, specifically addresses waste material and residual products of a toxic or hazardous nature. The Sub-Committee agreed that separate HS subheadings were necessary for “such waste products which were environmentally sensitive and whose transfrontier movement had to be monitored.” (See HQ 967288, citing Secretariat Action Comments, Chpt. 38 (3)). Similarly, the HSC has consistently considered the categories of waste under heading 3825, HS, to include toxic and ecotoxic substances or waste which if released, inhaled or ingested may have an immediate, delayed or chronic impact. Accordingly, Note 6 (d) to Chapter 38, HTSUS, reflects those categories of “other wastes” which are of a toxic or hazardous nature and which stem from the chemical or allied industries. Definitively, Note 6 (d) to Chapter 38 states that the expression “other wastes” applies to other wastes of the chemical or allied industries.

Given the aforementioned discussion regarding waste classification and the legislative history of heading 3825, HTSUS, we conclude that the subject depleted uranium contaminated soil is an environmentally sensitive waste material properly classified in heading 3825, HTSUS. More specifically, we find that the subject DU contaminated soil is classifiable as other waste of the chemical or allied industry.


Part 134, CBP Regulations (19 CFR Part 134), implements the country of origin marking requirements and the exceptions of 19 U.S.C. §1304. Section 134.1(b), CBP Regulations (19 CFR 134.1(b)), defines “country of origin” as the country of manufacture, production or growth of any article of foreign origin entering the United States. Further work or material added to an article in another country must effect a substantial transformation in order to render such other country the “country of origin” within the meaning of the marking laws and regulations. A substantial transformation occurs when an article emerges from a manufacturing process with a name, character, or use that differs from that of the original material subjected to the process. Texas Instruments v. United States, 69 CCPA 152, 156, 681 F.2d 778, 782 (1982).

In the present case, the DU Tank Penetrator Rounds owned by the United States Army were destroyed during the fire at Camp Doha in 1991. The Doha fire resulted in a meltdown and complete destruction of the U.S. DU Penetrator munitions. As a result, residual quantities of depleted uranium seeped into the ground at Camp Doha. Subsequently the soil beneath the site of the fire was excavated and removed by MKM Engineers for processing and analysis. During the processing, the soil material was sifted and segregated into two waste streams of contaminated soil and oversized DU munitions debris. Oversized materials such as DU Penetrator fragments, shrapnel and contaminated soil with radioactive levels of 400 cpm or greater were removed and shall be disposed of in a separate transaction.

The Kuwaiti soil was contaminated with radioactive impurities and therefore lost its use and original crude state. Although contaminated by residual quantities of depleted uranium, the soil maintains the physical appearance and composition of soil and continues to possess certain qualities of soil. However, the sandy soil has changed in its character and use, i.e. it is “contaminated” soil.

By contrast, we believe that once incinerated by the Camp Doha fire, the U.S. owned DU Penetrator munitions ceased to exist entirely. According to reports, all that remains of the U.S. weapons are residual concentrations of depleted uranium incorporated into and commingled with Kuwaiti soil. In HQ 556616, dated June 16, 1992, and HQ 734558, dated July 22, 1992, we noted that an operation which had the effect of destroying the identity, character and use of an article and thereby creating a new and commercially different article, met the standards for substantial transformation. Here, the fire effectively destroyed the physical characteristics, identity and use of the U.S. DU Penetrator Rounds.

In fact, all that remains of the once U.S. Penetrator Rounds is residual concentrations of source material (depleted uranium) incorporated and commingled with approximately 6,700 tons of sandy soil from Kuwait. It is the DU contaminated soil that is being imported into the U.S. for secured disposal. As such, we find that the sandy soil and U.S. DU Penetrator rounds underwent a substantial transformation and emerged as a new article, DU contaminated soil. Accordingly, we conclude that the country of origin for this waste material is Kuwait.

We note here that the same would be true had the DU Penetrators detonated normally (i.e. in testing or military activities) and residual amounts of depleted uranium dissolved into the soil. The end result would be soil contaminated with trace amounts of depleted uranium.


Under 19 C.F.R. §134.11 every article of foreign origin imported into the United States must be marked in such a manner to indicate the country of origin, unless the article is excepted from this provision. You contend that the waste material imported from Kuwait falls under one of the exceptions to the marking requirements pursuant to 19 C.F.R. §134.32. Certain articles which are described, listed or meet one of the specific conditions set forth in either 19 C.F.R. §134.32 or 19 C.F.R. §134.33 are excepted from the country of origin marking requirements.

19 C.F.R. §134.32

You contend that the subject waste material meets the exception in §134.32 (f) of this section because the contaminated soil is not intended for sale. This reasoning discounts the two-part test of this exception. In order to qualify for an exception under 19 C.F.R. §134.32 (f), the articles must be “imported for use by the importer and not intended for sale in their imported or any other form.” Here, the depleted uranium contaminated material is imported for disposal in the United States. It shall not be subject to resale in its imported condition or in any subsequent condition. Likewise, this waste material has no commercial value and will not be further integrated into the stream of commerce. Therefore, it meets one of the criteria for subsection §134.32 (f).

However, the provision is a two-part test. The second prong of §134.32 (f) requires that the goods be used by its importer. Previous rulings issued by CBP explain that 19 CFR §134.32 (f) excepts items such as: marketing samples, articles imported for testing, showroom displays, machines, equipment and other supplies used to carry on business. In NY M84032, dated June 22, 2006, for example, we excepted “hair swatch samples” from the Marking requirement because they were imported as displays for the importer’s own use and not for resale. Although the subject waste material will be disposed of and will not be the subject of any further sale, it will not be used by the importer and therefore does not satisfy both criteria for exception 19 CFR §134.32 (f).

19 C.F.R. §134.33

You also assert that the subject DU contaminated soil meets the requirements for a “J-List” exception as “waste” pursuant to 19 C.F.R. §134.33. We agree with this position. Section 134.33, CBP Regulations (19 C.F.R. §134.33), provides for “J-List” exceptions to the country of origin marking requirements for “[a]rticles of a class or kind listed [under this section].” Waste is an article of a class or kind specifically listed on the “J-List” of 19 C.F.R. §134.33. Accordingly, the subject waste material is not subject to the Marking requirements.

On the basis of the language set forth in section 304(a)(3)(J), Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304(a)(3)(J)), we conclude that inclusion on the “J-List” means only that an article does not have to be marked to indicate its own country of origin. Inclusion on the “J-List” does not except the container of an article from being marked to indicate the country of origin of its contents under the provisions of §134.22 (a). Accordingly, the outermost container in which the article ordinarily reaches the ultimate purchaser is required to be marked to indicate the origin of its contents.


Section 134.33 requires that for “J-List” articles which are imported in a container, the containers in which the article reaches the ultimate purchaser must be marked to indicate the origin of its contents. Similarly, 19 CFR §134.24 (d) states that, “usual disposable containers shall not be required to be marked to show the country of their own origin, but shall be marked to indicate the origin of their contents regardless of the fact that the contents are excepted from marking requirements.”

The subject contaminated material shall be packaged in Industrial Packaging Type 1 (IP-1) packages in accordance with 49 CFR §173.411. Title 49 requires that all packages used in the transport of radioactive materials must meet the design requirements of 49 CFR §173. 410. Note that IP-1 Super Sacks are not disposable containers or holders as contemplated by Section 134.24 (a). This section provides for “usual ordinary disposable containers, including cans, paper bags, polyethylene bags and paperboard boxes.” The IP-1 Super Sacks cannot be described as being usual or ordinary. Nonetheless the IP-1 containers are not designed for or capable of reuse. According to American Ecology these DOT required packages must be disposed of and will not be further used. In that sense, the IP-1 packages are disposable containers and therefore meet the standards set forth in §134.24 (a). As imported the IP-1 “Super Sacks” will be grouped and housed in “Sea-Land Containers.” According to American Ecology, the Sea-Land containers are the outermost containers which will reach the ultimate purchaser, the U.S. Ecology Idaho, Inc. Radioactive Waste Disposal Facility. Under §134.33 (a), “J-List” items which are imported in containers, the outermost containers in which the article ordinarily reaches the ultimate purchaser is required to be marked to indicate the origin of its contents. Accordingly, we find that the “Sea-Land Containers” are required to be marked to indicate the origin of the contents found in the IP-1 Super Sacks.


By application of GRI 1, Note 1 to Chapter 25, Note 6 (d) to Chapter 38, and the terms of heading 3825, HTSUS, the DU contaminated soil is classified in heading 3825, HTSUS and specifically in subheading 3825.69.00, which provides for: “Residual products of the chemical or allied industries, …: Other wastes from the chemical or allied industries: Other:” The 2007 column one, general rate of duty is Free ad valorem.

Under Part 134, CBP (19 CFR Part 134), we hold that the country of origin of this waste material is Kuwait. Pursuant to 19 CFR §134.33, the DU contaminated soil is excepted from the Marking requirement of 19 CFR. §134.11 as it satisfies the “J-List” exception as “waste.” In accordance with 19 CFR §134.24 (d) and 19 CFR §134.33, the DU contaminated soil need not be marked. However, the outermost containers (the Sea-Land containers) in which the DU contaminated soil will reach the ultimate purchaser must be marked to indicate the country of origin of the contents.

A copy of other government approval letters, compliance documents, permits, certifications and other related documents should be attached to this ruling letter at the time of entry and presented with the entry documents. If entry of the subject merchandise is made without said copies, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the CBP officer handling the transaction.


Gail A. Hamill, Chief
Tariff Classification and Marking Branch