Office of Environmental Health and Safety

Student in Lab

Characteristics of Hazardous Waste

Chemical waste is considered Hazardous waste if it is either listed as such, or if it exhibits one of the following hazardous characteristics: Ignitable, Corrosive, Reactive or Toxic.

Ignitable Waste
Any waste whose flash point is less than 140 °F.
Corrosive Waste
Any waste with a pH lower than 2.0 or greater than 12.5.
Reactive Waste
Waste that is unstable, shock-sensitive, or generates cyanide or sulfide gases.
Toxic Waste
Waste that equals or exceeds a designated concentration of certain toxic compounds.

Each laboratory is responsible for staying informed of, and complying with hazardous waste regulations, and for following University procedures regarding waste collection, segregation and labeling. The chemical safety officer will provide all materials necessary for the proper management of waste, from Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to labels and waste containers. All items are available at the chemical stockroom (Room J310) upon request. If you need postings, or forms please download them from this site.

Online Request for Chemical Waste Removal Form

Categories of Waste

There are three major categories of waste:

Chemical Waste
Any chemical that can no longer be used or identified is considered a chemical waste. Any chemical waste that exhibits a hazardous characteristic and that is listed by The United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), or The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MADEP) as a hazardous waste, is considered a Hazardous Waste. Such waste is regulated and requires special management.

Click here for information about Ethidium Bromide waste
Biological Waste
Any waste derived from a living thing or that comes into contact with living things is considered Biological Waste.
Universal Waste
Waste batteries, pesticides, and some mercury containing devices are regulated by the government as Universal waste. If you need to dispose of any such items, or electronic related equipment please contact the Physical Plant (X7566).

Note: Clark University has a recycling program. To request a pickup or information about the program, contact Jenny Isler at x7601.