Hazardous and Universal Waste

Outside contractors are responsible for the removal of any waste they create. It is recommended that clear guidelines be established on project scope documents. Project managers must ensure that waste generated is removed from campus and disposed of according to federal, state and local regulations.

  1. Hazardous Waste Definition: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations define a hazardous waste as a “solid waste or combination of solid wastes, which because of its quantity, concentration, or chemical, or infectious characteristics may (1) cause or significantly contribute to an increase in mortality or an increase in serious irreversible, or incapacitating reversible illness or (2) pose a substantial present or potential hazard to human health or the environment when improperly treated, stored, transported, disposed of or otherwise managed.” EPA also states a waste is hazardous if it is “ignitable, corrosive, reactive or toxic”, or fits one of these lists: (1) Non-Specific Source Wastes (F Codes); (2) Discarded Commercial Chemical Products, Off-Specification Species, Container Residues and Spill Residues; (3) Acute Discarded Waste [in its original form] (P Codes); (4) Toxic Discarded Waste [in its original form] (U Codes).
  2. Two Important Federal Acts:
    1. The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) passed in 1976. It empowered the EPA to regulate the disposal of solid and hazardous waste. In Massachusetts, the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) oversees this program. In 1984, the Hazardous and Solid Waste Amendments banned hazardous waste from landfills.
    2. The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA), known as Superfund was enacted in 1980. This law makes the original generator of a waste responsible for that material forever, from "cradle to grave".
  3. Hazardous Waste Accumulation Area
    1. Main Accumulation Area (MAA): An area on campus where hazardous wastes are collected and managed prior to off-site shipment. This area is located in the basement of the Science Building.
    2. Satellite Accumulation Area (SAA): An area that is at or near the site of generation of hazardous waste. These areas are located in each of our laboratories in the Science Building.

Universal Waste

Material that cannot go to a regular landfill, so cannot be disposed of in the regular trash. Requires special handling procedures. Must use a licensed disposal contractor.

  1. Lamps and Bulbs that contain mercury or lead.
  2. Cathode Ray Tubes or CRTs contained in computer screens and television sets.
  3. Batteries to include nickel-cadmium and small sealed lead acid batteries.
  4. Larger lead acid batteries for cars are subject to other regulations.
  5. Thermostats that contain mercury.

This area is located in the basement of the Science Building.

Biological Waste Disposal

  1. Scope: departments who “generate” medical or biological waste to include: Health Services, Laboratories, Nursing, the Regis College Police Department, and Athletics
  2. Responsibilities: EHS will serve as a resource for proper storage, labeling, transport, disinfection and disposal. EHS will assist in coordinating with the disposal(s) contractor.
  3. Medical or Biological Waste in Massachusetts:
    1. Blood and blood products – in a free draining, liquid state.
    2. Pathological Waste – human tissues, parts, body fluids.
    3. Infectious Agents (Cultures and Stocks of) and their Associated Biologicals. This includes culture dishes and devices used to transfer, inoculate and mix cultures as well as discarded live and attenuated vaccines intended for human use.
    4. Contaminated Animal Waste
    5. Sharps – can cause punctures or cuts and includes needles, syringes, lancets, Pasteur pipettes, and disposable razors associated with medical or biological material procedures.
    6. Biotechnology By-Product Effluents – discarded liquids, cultures, and solutions made from microorganisms and their products to include genetically altered living microorganisms and their products.
      1. Definitions of the foregoing are located in Department of Public Health regulations, 105 CMR 480.010
      2. OSHA Regulated Waste: a liquid or semi-liquid blood or other potentially infectious materials; contaminated items that would release blood or other potentially infectious materials in a liquid or semi-liquid state if compressed; items that are caked with dried blood or other potentially infectious materials and are capable of releasing these materials during handling; contaminated sharps; and pathological and microbiological wastes containing blood or other potentially infectious materials.