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Environmental Health and Safety

Waste Management

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Unwanted Material or Waste

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) set up the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), which uses a framework for the proper management of hazardous waste from "cradle to grave". Therefore, Wright State must manage the waste from the time it is created, while it is transported, treated, stored, and until it is disposed of.

Unwanted materials or waste must comply with EPA and institutional requirements.

  • All materials that are no longer useful must be classified as hazardous or non-hazardous waste. This classification is determined by EHS. 
  • Handle all chemical or hazardous materials safely. Refer to its Safety Data Sheet.
  • Wear required Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
  • Contact your supervisor or EHS if you are unsure how to handle a waste.
  • Drain disposal of chemical liquids is not permitted unless approved by EHS.
  • All waste must be labeled with the accumulation start date, building/room, accumulator information, each chemical component, its concentration, and its hazard. 
  • Complete the Unwanted Material Form for a Pick-Up at: https://wright.edu/ehs-pickup-form

Animal/Biological Containing Preservative Material

For preservative material that still contains animal or biological specimens:

  • Separate the animal or biological material from the preservative into separate containers.
  • Allow the animal or biological material to drain to remove as much of the chemical preservative as possible.
  • Collect two separate labeled, closed, leak-proof containers: (1) remaining animal or biological material and (2) liquid preservative.

Chemical-Contaminated Material

For chemical-contaminated material that has been contaminated by a non-infectious hazardous material or chemical such as gloves, pipettes, glassware, or any other lab debris:

  • "Sharps"-type chemical-contaminated lab material shall be accumulated in a rigid, puncture-resistant, leak-resistant container and labeled as containing "sharps", in addition to the chemical name and hazard. "Sharps" include needles, razor blades, glass pipettes, broken glass, or any other material that poses a puncture potential. Sharps that are infectious must be managed as infectious or medical waste. 
  • Non-"sharps"-type chemical-contaminated lab material may be collected in a plastic bag, such as a transparent, autoclave bag.

Chemical-Containing or -Contaminated Equipment

For equipment, appliances, or machinery that contains a chemical material integral to the operation of the device or has been contaminated by a chemical due to use or spillage (e.g., asbestos, mercury, oil, refrigerant):

  • All excess property requiring disposal must follow University  Policy 9410 for the requirements of ESPM. 
  • Any chemical removed from equipment shall be managed by following the instructions for the specific type of chemical. 
  • Any chemical contaminated material generated from the decontamination of equipment shall be managed as chemical-contaminated lab trash.

Chemical Spill Material

For material used to clean up a chemical spill (e.g., spill pads, paper towels, or gloves)

  • Accumulate all spill cleanup material in a plastic bag. 

Empty Containers

For empty containers that did not contain an EPA's P-listed waste,

  • If your empty container did not contain any chemical on the List of Regulated Empty Containers follow the applicable procedure below:
    • If the container contained a water soluble or miscible product, triple rinse the container with water.
    • If the container contained a nonwater soluble product (i.e., oil) put a minimal amount of absorbent material (oil dry, vermiculite) in the container prior to disposing.
  • Remove, or otherwise make illegible, all markings on the container indicating its prior contents or hazards.
  • If you have an empty container that contained a chemical on the List of Regulated Chemical Containers and have contacted EHS then complete the registration certifying you have participated in this training. Only after completing the registration will EHS be permitted to pickup material from you.

Certain empty containers must be rinsed with a suitable solvent, and the rinsate collected, prior to disposing the container. If you have an empty container that contained any chemical the EPA considers acutely hazardous then rinsing with a suitable solvent is required. Check the List of Regulated Empty Containers found on the Environmental Health and Safety web page for these chemicals. Call EHS at (937) 775-2215 for rinsing procedures if your empty container had any of these chemicals.

An Empty Contain means:

  • All material has been removed from the container using the practices commonly employed to remove materials from that type of container by pouring, pumping, and aspirating; and,
    • No more than 2.5 centimeters (one inch) of residue remain on the bottom of the container or inner liner; or,
    • No more than 3 percent by weight of the total capacity of the container remains in the container or inner liner if the container is less than or equal to 110 gallons in size; or,
    • No more than 0.3 percent by weight of the total capacity of the container remains in the container or inner liner if the container is greater than 110 gallons in size.
  • A container that has held a compressed gas is empty when the pressure in the container reaches atmospheric pressure.

Gas Cylinders

  • Update the tag on the cylinder prior to pick-up as Full, In-Use, or Empty.
  • Confirm cylinder is labeled with its chemical name and hazard.
  • Gas cylinders obtained by AirGas are managed by Shipping and Receiving.
  • If the gas cylinder was not obtained by AirGas, complete the Unwanted Material Form for a Pick-Up at: https://wright.edu/ehs-pickup-form.
  • If a cylinder is of unknown content leave it where it is found and contact EHS immediately. 

High-Hazard Chemicals

Infectious Material

Infectious material requiring disposal is managed under a completely different set of EPA regulations. Fill out online form to request a pick-up.

Maintenance or Custodial Chemicals

  • Any unused, unwanted chemical or product shall be kept in its original container with the original label intact and legible.
  • Chemicals or products not in their original container or not with a legible label, and used chemicals or products shall be accumulated in suitable sized containers with a secure fitting lid. Any chemical or product accumulated in a container that does not have its original, in tact, legible label must be labeled in one of the following manners:
    • The container must be CLEARLY marked with the product name and product company with mailing address and/or phone number; or,
    • Obtain from EHS an unwanted chemical material label. Complete the label and affix it to the container.

Mixed Radioactive/Chemical Material

For mixed chemical and radioactive

  • Mixed radioactive/chemical material must be labeled and packaged for both its radioactive and chemical content. To properly label the material for it's radioactive content contact the Radiation Safety Office.
  • To properly label and package the material for it's chemical content return to the previous slide and choose the icon that best describes your chemical material.
  • After labeling and packaging the material as described contact EHS at (937) 775-2215 to request a pick up.
  • Any mixed radioactive/chemical material found not to be labeled or packaged per these instructions will not be picked up until properly prepared for pickup.

Other Unwanted Chemical Material

Any unwanted chemical material that is not described elsewhere in this training program will be handled on a case-by-case basis. Call EHS at (937) 775-2215 for procedures, or fill out online form to request a pick-up.

Paint and Paint-Related Material

For paint (oil based or latex) and paint related material (i.e. epoxy, varnish, etc.)

  • All unwanted paint and paint related material shall be kept in its original container with its original label intact and legible. Paint must be separated between oil based and latex. Paint not in its original container, or not with a legible label must be accumulated in suitable sized containers with a secure fitting lid and must be labeled as to the type of paint. Mark the outside of the container with the words "Oil Based Paint" or "Latex Paint" to reflect the type of paint in the container.
  • Paint related material must be kept it in its original container with its original label intact and legible. Paint related material not in its original container, or not with a legible label, must be accumulated in suitable sized containers with a secure correct lid and must be labeled as to the type of material (i.e., "Varnish", "Turpentine", etc. . . )
  • Call EHS at (937) 775-2215if you will be generating more than five gallons of paint or paint-related material. EHS will supply you with an approved drum to accumulate your paint or paint-related material.
  • Fill out online form to request a pick-up. EHS performs routine chemical pick-ups on Friday of each week. If other arrangements for pick up are needed please call EHS at (937) 775-2215.
  • Any unwanted paint or paint related material found not to be labeled or packaged per these instructions will not be picked up or will be returned and left until properly prepared for pick up.

Radioactive Material

Radioactive material requiring disposal is managed by the Radiation Safety Office. You can contact the Radiation Safety Office by phone at (937) 775-2169 or via the Radiation Safety Office section of the EHS website.

Recycling; various

Note: For recycling of items not listed here, visit Facilities Operations website.

Batteries

  • Only chemically compatible battery types should be packaged in the same package.
  • All batteries must be packaged to prevent any sparks or generation of heat.
  • All batteries should be stored in a cool, dry environment.
  • All leads should be taped to prevent electrical contact.
  • Leaking batteries must be individually packaged and will require shipment as an EPA hazardous waste.
  • All containers of universal waste batteries must be marked with the words, “Universal Waste Batteries,” “Waste Batteries,” or “Used Batteries” and be marked with the accumulation start date.
  • The accumulation start date shall not go over one year.

Electronics

  • All university-owned electronics (e.g., unwanted computers, monitors, televisions, etc.) must be managed through ESPM. 

Fluorescent Lights and Ballasts

If you generate fluorescent light ballasts that contain PCB's and/or fluorescent lights, including all mercury vapor, HID, high pressure sodium, and metal halide lamps you are to contact the Facilities Operations Customer Service Center at (937) 775-4444 for the nearest Facilities Operations Shop and request a pick-up. Fluorescent light ballasts and fluorescent lights, including all mercury vapor, HID, high pressure sodium, and metal halide lamps, are to be collected by Facilities Operations.

Use these instructions if you work for Facilities Operations and have the responsibility of collecting fluorescent lights or ballasts:

  • Fluorescent Lights: Fluorescent lights, including all mercury vapor, HID, high pressure sodium, and metal halide lamps are to be accumulated by Facilities Operations personnel and recycled, by Facilities Operations, through the university's contracted recycling firm. All packaging of fluorescent lights shall be as instructed by the recycling firm. All fluorescent lights must be sent for recycling. The disposal of any fluorescent lights into the regular trash is prohibited without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Health and Safety.
  • Ballasts: Ballasts that contain PCB's are to be accumulated by Facilities Operations and ultimately disposed through the Department of Environmental Health and Safety (EHS). Follow these guidelines:
    • Only ballasts containing PCB's must be managed as described here. Non PCB containing ballasts can be disposed as regular solid waste by discarding them in the nearest trash receptacle or dumpster. Any ballast used prior to 1980 is assumed to contain PCB's unless the words "Contains No PCB's" is written on the label. Any ballast manufactured after 1980 (except for dry electric ballasts) should be labeled as not containing PCB's. Dry electric ballasts do not contain PCB's.
    • PCB containing ballasts shall be accumulated in an approved 30 gallon steel drum. Call EHS at (937) 775-2215 for the drums.
    • All wires shall be clipped off the ballast as close to the ballast as possible.
    • Ballasts should be stacked in the drum to allow for the greatest number of ballasts as possible to be collected in one drum.
    • All full drums must be stored in an area accessible by EHS's truck. When drums are ready, fill out online form to request a pick-up. Let EHS know if any new drums are needed.
    • All full drums must be discarded within one year from the date of the first ballast added to the drum.
    • Any PCB ballasts found not to be packaged per these instructions will not be picked up or will be returned and / or left until properly prepared for pick up.

Mercury-Containing Devices (MCD)

  • Intact thermometers or MCDs can be picked up without any labeling or packaging. Contact EHS to request a pick-up at (937) 775-2215
  • Broken thermometers must have the broken end taped closed to prevent the accidental discharge of mercury.
  • Call EHS for assistance in cleaning up any spilled mercury, or contact EHS to request a pick-up.

If you have any questions, please feel free to call EHS at (937) 775-2215.

Spent Solvents

Use these instructions for spent organic solvents. If the solvent is not spent or used then follow the instructions for Unused Reagents and/or Chemicals.

  • Spent solvents may be collected in one of two manners:
  • Any spent solvent found not to be labeled or packaged per these instructions will not be picked up or will be returned and left until properly prepared for pick up.
  • Complete the registration certifying you have participated in this training. Only after completing the registration will EHS be permitted to pickup material from you.

Method 1

  • Accumulate the spent solvent in a suitable sized container, compatible with the solvent, with a secure fitting lid. This is the recommended method when generating solvent at an infrequent rate.
    • Obtain from EHS an unwanted chemical material label. Complete the label per the instructions and affix to the container.
    • Fill out online form to request a pick-up. EHS performs routine chemical pick-ups on Friday of each week. If other arrangements are needed please call EHS at (937) 775- 2215.
    • Upon request, your container can be returned to you for reuse.

Method 2

  • Accumulate the spent solvent in an approved flammable safety can. These cans vary in size from a half gallon to five gallons. They can be purchased through an outside vendor. Call EHS at (937) 775-2215 for a list of vendors or EHS often has used cans that can be given to you. Choose a can size with a capacity to handle at least two weeks of spent solvent. This is the recommended method if generating spent solvent frequently at higher volumes.
  • Call EHS at (937) 775-2215 to obtain a spent solvent inventory sheet to be attached to the can clipboard style. EHS will assist with this.
  • Make an appropriate entry onto the spent solvent inventory sheet each time a volume of spent solvent is poured into the can. An appropriate entry includes the chemical name(s) of the spent solvent(s), the volume, and the percentage of solvents if a mixture. When making the entry record the chemical name. DO NOT USE ABBREVIATIONS, CHEMICAL FORMULAS, OR TRADENAMES.
  • Fill out online form to request a pick-up. EHS performs routine chemical pick-ups on friday of each week. If you anticipate a steady generation of spent solvent then EHS can check your lab each week without you requesting a pick up. Please arrange this in advance by calling EHS at (937) 775-2215.

The safety can will be emptied by EHS and the can, along with a new inventory sheet, will be returned to you.

Any spent solvent found not to be labeled or packaged per these instructions will not be picked up or will be returned and left until properly prepared for pick up.

Unknown Chemical Material

EHS WILL NOT PICK UP UNKNOWN CHEMICAL MATERIAL. EHS is not equipped to identify unknown chemical material and is not funded to provide analysis.

There are two options to properly manage unknown chemical material:

  • EHS will arrange for proper analysis of the material at the expense of the generator or generator's department. The cost of such analysis depends on the amount of the material, it's physical state (solid, liquid, or gas), and how much information is known about the material. Call EHS at (937) 775-2215 for arrangements.
  • The generator can arrange for analysis or use generator knowledge to provide information on the material to make it acceptable for EHS to pick up. What information is needed will depend on the amount of unknown material, it's physical state, and how much information is known about the material. Call EHS at (937) 775-2215 to determine what information will be needed.

Unused Reagents and/or Chemicals

Use these instructions for unused chemical material in their original container. If your material has been used go to the icon (previous page) that better describes your unwanted material.

  • Ensure that all material has its original label. If the original label is missing or not legible complete an unwanted chemical material label per the instructions and affix it to the container.
  • Ensure that all containers have a secure fitting lid.
  • Collect all unused or surplus reagents/chemicals in one area (preferably in boxes).
  • Fill out online form to request a pick-up. EHS performs routine chemical pick-ups on Friday of each week. If other arrangements for pick up are needed please call EHS at (937) 775-2215.

Any unused surplus reagent/chemical found not to be labeled or packaged per these instructions will not be picked up or will be returned and left until properly prepared for pick up.

Used Acids/Bases

Use these instructions for used acid or base material. If the acid or base is not used then follow the instructions for Unused Reagents and/or Chemicals.

  • Accumulate all unwanted used acid or base material in a suitable sized container, compatible with the unwanted material, with a secure fitting lid.
  • Obtain from EHS an unwanted chemical material label. Complete the label per the instructions and affix it to the container.
  • Fill out online form to request a pick-up. EHS performs routine chemical pick-ups on Friday of each week. If other arrangements for pick up are needed please call EHS at (937) 775-2215.

Any unwanted used acid or base material found not to be labeled or packaged per these instructions will not be picked up or will be returned and left until properly prepared for pick up.

Used Aqueous/Liquid Material

 Use these instructions for used aqueous and other liquid material. If the material is not used then follow the instructions for Unused Reagents and/or Chemicals.

  • Accumulate all unwanted used aqueous and other liquid material in a suitable sized container, compatible with the material, with a secure fitting lid.
  • Obtain from EHS an unwanted chemical material label. Complete the label per the instructions and affix it to the container.
  • Fill out the online form to request a pick-up. EHS performs routine chemical pick-ups on Friday of each week. If other arrangements for pick up are needed please call EHS at (937) 775-2215.

Any unwanted used aqueous and other liquid material found not to be labeled or packaged per these instructions will not be picked up or will be returned and left until properly prepared for pick up.

Used or Unused Oil

  • Keep unused oil in its original container and mark "UNUSED" on the container. Fill out online form to request a pick-up.
  • Used oil must be accumulated in a suitable sized container with a secure fitting lid. Mark the container with the words "USED OIL."
  • If the used oil contains any chemical contaminants obtain from EHS an unwanted chemical material label. Complete the label and affix it to the container of used oil.
  • Fill out online form to request a pick-up. EHS performs routine chemical pick-ups on Friday of each week. If other arrangements for pick up are needed please call EHS at (937) 775-2215.
  • Any unwanted oil found not to be labeled or packaged per these instructions will not be picked up or will be returned and left until properly prepared for pick up.

Used Photographic Chemicals

Use these instructions for used photographic chemical material. If the photographic chemical material is not used then follow the instructions for Unused Reagents and/or Chemicals.

  • EHS has performed evaluations of all known darkrooms on campus. These evaluations have resulted in the finding that most used fixer must be collected and managed by EHS. Darkrooms that must collect the used fixer have been notified by EHS. If you are generating used fixer that is required to be managed by EHS then accumulate the fixer in a suitable sized container, compatible with the fixer, with a secure fitting lid and label the container "USED FIXER". EHS will return the container for reuse upon request.
  • Fill out online form to request a pick-up. EHS performs routine chemical pick-ups on Friday of each week. If other arrangements for pick up are needed please call EHS at (937) 775-2215.
  • Any used fixer found not to be labeled or packaged per these instructions will not be picked up or will be returned and left until properly prepared for pick up.
  • The evaluations of the darkrooms on campus have resulted in the allowance of used developer, stop bath, and wash to be released to the sanitary sewer.
  • If you are generating any other unwanted used photographic chemical material it must be evaluated by EHS for proper management. If you are unsure of the status of your requirements for managing used photographic chemical material from your darkroom please call EHS at (937) 775-2215.
  • Used and/or unused film may be disposed as regular trash.

Any other type of used photographic chemical material not identified in these instructions will be managed case by case. Call EHS at (937) 775-2215 for management instructions.

Used Solid Chemicals

Use these instructions for used solid chemicals only. If the solid chemical is unused then follow the instructions for Unused Reagents and/or Chemicals.

  • Accumulate all unwanted used solid chemicals in a suitable sized container with a secure fitting lid. If accumulating a mix of solid chemicals make sure all chemicals are compatible. Check Safety Data Sheets (SDS), hazardous material literature, or call EHS at (937) 775-2215 for assistance in determining chemical compatibility.
  • The following used solid chemicals are not to be mixed with other solid chemicals:
    • any mercury containing chemical (i.e., mercuric chloride, elemental mercury)
    • any heavy metal containing chemical (i.e., lead acetate, barium sulfate)
    • any carbon powder or activated carbon.
  • After the solid chemical is collected in a suitable sized container with a secure fitting lid obtain from EHS an unwanted chemical material label. Complete the label and affix it to the container.
  • Fill out online form to request a pick-up. EHS performs routine chemical pick-ups on Friday of each week. If other arrangements for pick up are needed please call EHS at ext. 2215.
  • If you plan on generating a large volume of used solid chemicals, EHS can supply you with a container for the accumulation of the used chemicals. Call EHS at (937) 775-2215 to request a container. If choosing to use one of these containers follow these instructions:
  • Obtain from EHS a used solid chemical inventory sheet to be attached to the container.
  • Make an appropriate entry onto the used solid chemical inventory sheet each time a used solid chemical is added to the container. An appropriate entry includes the chemical name(s), the amount (in grams) of each chemical(s), and any liquid contaminant contained in the material from activities such as filtration or chromatography. DO NOT USE ABBREVIATIONS, CHEMICAL FORMULAS, OR TRADENAMES.
  • Fill out online form to request a pick-up when the container becomes full. EHS performs routine chemical pick-ups on Friday of each week. If you anticipate a steady generation of used dry chemicals then EHS can check your lab each week without you requesting a pick up. Please arrange this in advance by calling EHS at (937) 775-2215.
  • The container will be removed from your lab when full and a new one will be returned.

Any unwanted solid chemicals found not to be labeled or packaged per these instructions will not be picked up or will be returned and left until properly prepared for pick up.


Regulated Empty Containers

 


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