Hazardous/Non-Hazardous Waste

Hazardous Waste

Hazardous Waste is defined as chemical material that can no longer be used for its intended purpose and is known to be harmful or potentially harmful to human health or to the environment.  There are two ways that hazardous waste is generated.

  1. Chemicals used in a procedure that are no longer needed.  These chemicals are usually collected in a waste container and are considered hazardous waste once the first drop hits the container.
  2. Chemicals that have not been used, but are no longer needed.  These chemicals are usually in the manufactures container they arrived in and are considered hazardous waste when the generator decides it is hazardous waste or when it becomes "inherently wastelike".

If you need your hazardous waste picked up please fill out the chemical pick-up form.

The EPA has several lists of specific chemicals it considers hazardous, but in general hazardous chemical waste will have one or more of the following characteristics.

Ignitability (flammable solvents, oxidizers, aerosol cans)

Corrosivity (Acids and bases)

Reactive (cyanides, sulfides, explosives)

Toxics (chloroform, heavy metal compounds, chlorinated solvents)

Examples of items that are disposed of as Hazardous Chemical waste:

  • Acids
  • Bases
  • Flammable Materials
  • Organic Solvents
  • Toxic Materials
  • Oxidizers
  • Mercury (contaminated debris, thermometers, thermostats, etc.)
  • Drugs (DEA regulated and non-DEA regulated)
  • Cleaning materials
  • Lead
  • Aerosols (empty and full)
  • Paint (oil-based)
  • Gas Cylinders (all types that are not returned to the vendor)

Please refer to the Labeling/Satellite Accumulation Areas page for instructions on labeling Hazardous Waste.

Non-Hazardous Waste

Non-Hazardous Waste is regulated under the Kansas solid waste regulations. It must be managed and disposed of properly. Non-hazardous waste includes:

Used oil (managed through the Environment, Health and Safety Office)
Medical wastes (picked up by University Housekeeping and managed through the Environment, Health and Safety Office)
Construction/demolition waste (managed through construction projects)

Examples of items that are disposed of as Non-Hazardous waste:

  • Paint (latex)
  • Oil (hydraulic, pump oil, lubricant, etc.)
  • Antifreeze
  • Buffers
  • Salts

Note: Non-Hazardous waste that is not regulated.

University Housekeeping may pick up broken glass boxes filled with non-contaminated glass.  Only fill boxes half full so they can be closed properly.

If you have any questions about whether your chemical waste is hazardous or non-hazardous, please contact the EHS office.

Last modified: Apr 16, 2014
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