When it comes to the proper management and disposal of Hazardous Waste, it is important to understand the exact types of waste your business generates. Due to strict regulations, hazardous waste cannot be simply disposed of with the rest of your waste. Instead, it should be removed in a manner consistent with strict government policy.

Another complication is the fact that not all hazardous waste receives the same treatment. There are several specific types that should be removed accordingly. According to the EPA, there are four different types: listed, characteristic, universal, and mixed. Let’s take a closer look at each of these types and the correct removal methods.

Listed waste

The listed wastes are divided into four lists: List F, List K, List P, and List U. List F contains wastes from non-specific sources of common industrial and manufacturing processes, such as B. Solvents used for degreasing and cleaning. It is classified as non-specific waste because it can be generated in various branches of industry.

List K contains wastes specific to certain industries, such as pesticide production or petroleum production. These treatment and production processes produce certain types of wastewater and sludge that are classified as hazardous waste of specific origin.

Both List P and List U contain discarded commercial chemicals in unused form. For example, some pharmaceuticals and pesticides are classified as hazardous waste when disposed of.

Characteristic residues

Characteristic wastes do not fall into any of the categories listed above, but are always classified as hazardous waste because they have one of four characteristics: flammability, corrosivity, reactivity, or toxicity.

Flammable wastes are those that can cause a fire, have a flash point below 140 degrees Fahrenheit, or are spontaneously combustible. Corrosive wastes are bases or acids that can melt metal containers such as kegs, storage tanks, and kegs. Reactive wastes, such as lithium sulfur batteries, are unstable under normal conditions, and toxic wastes are fatal or harmful if absorbed or ingested.

For proper labeling of hazardous substances, waste exhibiting these characteristics must be labeled with the appropriate hazardous substance placards or labels.

Universal waste

Universal wastes include pesticides, batteries, devices that contain mercury, and light bulbs. EPA simplifies the management of these types of commonly generated waste to ensure proper treatment or recycling and to keep it out of landfills.

Mixed waste

Mixed waste contains hazardous and radioactive waste. The regulation and collection of this type of waste is complex and overseen by a wide variety of agencies, including the Indian Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Indian Department of Energy, and the EPA.

Identification of hazardous waste

The hazardous waste identification process is the first step to proper hazardous waste disposal. Correctly determining the type of waste you are handling will ensure that the steps you take to dispose of it are appropriate for the type.

The HWID process involves identifying the answers to four questions: Is the material a solid waste? Are waste excluded from the law of conservation and development of resources? Is the waste specifically listed as hazardous waste? Does the waste have any of the four properties of hazardous waste?

It is the responsibility of the waste producer to decide whether a waste is hazardous. Knowing the answers to the questions above will help you determine which of the above categories your waste falls under if any. With this information, you can better determine how and where to dispose of your business-generated waste.

Hazardous waste disposal

Companies are legally obliged to dispose of hazardous waste in an environmentally friendly way and to prevent people from being exposed to it. Most companies that generate hazardous waste deliver it to an approved treatment, storage, and disposal facilities or TSDFs. Facilities include solvent recovery facilities, hazardous waste landfills, fuel mixers, and incinerators.

Before shipment, all hazardous waste must be carefully separated. This should be done for reasons of safety and economy. All shipments must comply with the hazardous materials regulations of the United States Department of Transportation. Proper labeling of dangerous substances is mandatory and appropriate dangerous goods labels must be placed on all shipments. Shipments must be accompanied by a hazardous waste manifest and be transported by an authorized carrier.

Proper disposal of Hazardous Waste protects the environment and prevents death and injury. Knowing the different types of hazardous waste will help you properly classify and dispose of the waste generated by your business.