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Hazardous Waste Disposal

Hazardous waste collection for biological, chemical, and radioactive waste materials is carried out by the Environmental Health and Safety Office. Waste sharps (e.g. syringes, needles) are collected in special containers in the laboratory. All waste materials must be appropriately labelled and contained prior to removal by the EH&S Office. Proper labelling, packaging, and storage of hazardous wastes are the responsibility of the waste generator. Appropriate procedures are available from EH&S Office.

Note: it is dangerous and illegal to dispose of hazardous biological, chemicals, and radioactive materials down drains or in the regular garbage going to landfill.

Disposal of Special Wastes

Dalhousie University, as does any research-intensive organizations, generates many special wastes. These include animal tissues and related wastes that are regulated as biohazardous waste.

Managing the waste stream is everyone's responsibility. Transportation and disposal of animal tissue is subject to provincial and federal regulations. Failure to observe appropriate disposal practices can cause harm to people and the environment. Failure to follow appropriate practices can also lead to prosecution. Your co-operation is essential to ensure that all special wastes are disposed of in accord with the appropriate procedures.

Chemical Storage Facility

Since 1987, the Environmental Health and Safety Office has coordinated the university's hazardous waste disposal effort. With the assistance of Facilities Management (Transportation and Moving Services), trained staff collect waste solvents and related material from various locations across our campuses. The material is taken to the Chemical Storage Facility where items are sorted and either bulked, lab packed, recycled, or rendered non-hazardous for disposal. The liquid wastes are generally "bulked" into approved containers with other compatible materials and shipped for disposal and/or recycling to an approved waste facility by a licensed hazardous waste disposal firm. Materials that cannot be "bulked" are packed in approved containers with an itemized list and other paper work as required by federal and provincial acts and regulations. During the last 20+ years, more than 150,000 kg of hazardous waste material were removed which corresponds to roughly 30,000 individual items every year.

As our researchers develop new and exciting technologies, support services must be able to readily adapt to these changes and if possible, be prepared for the different types of materials that are produced. We generally accept the full range of hazardous waste including ignitable, corrosive, reactive, toxic, infectious, and radioactive materials. In the last few years, we have seen an increase in both volumes and costs for hazardous waste disposal services. In order to provide sustained services in the future, we are required to implement a recovery fee structure for hazardous waste disposal services for large submissions and/or requests demanding additional specialized services.