Waste Minimization

The University has a policy in place committing it to a comprehensive waste reduction and recycling program. All members of the University community are expected to cooperate with this policy and the following goals:

  • Reduce the solid and hazardous wastes generated each year
  • Recycle most solid waste by 1995
  • Conserve natural resources and reduce environmental degradation

The University prepared a Pollution Prevention Plan in 1993 which includes a five year plan for reducing dangerous waste quantities. However, it takes the efforts of each person who uses chemicals to minimize the amount of waste generated. There are several ways you can assist in this effort, as shown below.

For further information, contact the Environmental Health and Safety office.

Ways to Minimize Chemical Wastes

Treat Chemicals by the Following Methods:

  • Acid-base neutralization
  • Oxidizer reduction
  • Reactive deactivation
  • Inorganic material detoxification
  • Organic material detoxification
  • Metal recovery
Substitute One Chemical for Another
  • Red liquid, metal or digital thermometers for mercury thermometers
Minimize The Amount or Toxicity
  • Distill spent solvents for re-use
  • Segregate halogenated and non-halogenated waste
  • Segregate very toxic waste from other wastes
  • Perform initial rinses with spent solvent
Manage Chemicals
  • Consider alternatives to hazardous materials when work is planned
  • Purchase recycled chemicals
  • Purchase chemicals through one person
  • Update chemical inventories
  • Exchange un-expired chemicals with other organizational units
  • Exchange chemicals with other departments
Page Updated 08.06.2012