Chemical Waste

Definition: Non-radioactive chemicals and or solid waste contaminated with hazardous chemicals. If you have any questions, please contact Safety and Environmental Management (SEM) at 7-7409 or 7-6913

Examples of Chemical Waste include:

  • waste and expired  chemicals
  • Broken thermometers and any items containing mercury
  • Non-returnable gas cylinders and lecture bottles (18 inch max)
  • Materials used for clean-up of chemical spills
  • Used oil of any type
  • Photographic film processing solutions
  • lead shielding and lead scrap (No radioactive contamination)

General Instructions

  • Do Not discard any chemical waste in the trash or down the drains without consulting with SEM
  • Designate a Hazardous Waste Storage Area
  • Perform a weekly inspection of the lab chemical waste storage are
  • Acquire labels and forms from SEM or download from the SEM website
  • When completing the GU chemical waste label, identify all hazardous components by chemical name (not by acronym or brand name).
  • Separate aqueous waste from organics
  • Separate halogenated organics from non-halogenated organics
  • Do not allow excessive chemical waste to accumulate in the work area
  • Fax completed forms to 7-8426
If Discarding Chemical In: Then:
Original Container
  • Print "Hazardous Waste" and then discard date on the container
  • If original label is absent, loose or illegible, complete and attach a GU "Hazardous Waste" chemical waste label
Container other than original
  • Deface the container's original label or identification
  • Complete and affix GU "Hazardous Waste" chemical waste label


Bulk Chemicals
  • Complete GU "Hazardous Waste" chemical waste label and affix to container
  • Only place compatible chemicals in a single containers
  • Never place heavy metal compounds, oxidizers, phenols, strong acids or bases in noncompatible container
  • Fill only to the "fill line"
  • Store away from ignition and/or heat sources
  • Five gallon flammable chemical containers must be stored in a flammable storage cabinet
Chemically Contaminated Solid Waste 
  • Place materials in a clear plastic bag or appropriate container
  • Close the container/bag and place in a chemical fume hood or secondary container (such as cardboard box)
  • Complete and attach GU "Hazardous Waste" chemical waste label
  • Call SEM for pick-up or when you have questions