What is Hazardous Waste Collection?

Dulce Corazon

Hazardous waste collection is the process of properly gathering and containing hazardous environmental waste materials from commercial, residential and industrial areas to be properly managed and disposed of later. For residential areas, hazardous waste handling is generally done by residents before duly authorized hazardous waste collection agents from the neighborhood can be contacted. Most of these agents will respond to the hazardous waste collection request within a working day. Commercial establishments also make requests for hazardous waste collections, for which they usually pay a fee.

Radioactive waste is usually buried in hermetically sealed containers.
Radioactive waste is usually buried in hermetically sealed containers.

Environmental pollution is generally caused by hazardous waste materials such as batteries, engine oil, fluorescent tubes, and gas bottles. Other examples of waste materials include computer monitors, television monitors, pesticides, paints, and other household chemicals. To address this threat to the environment, authorities including local and state governments and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have come up with various hazardous waste programs to be implemented.

Motor oil should be recycled or disposed of properly, since it is hazardous waste.
Motor oil should be recycled or disposed of properly, since it is hazardous waste.

These hazardous waste programs usually involve hazardous waste collection in many residential neighborhoods. There are also city-wide hazardous waste clean up activities being done. Hazardous waste regulations are expected to be strictly enforced in all of these programs. Officials and civilians alike are also required to comply with these regulations.

Most hazardous waste programs often start with hazardous waste collection where all kinds of waste materials are consolidated in one area, but not mixed together. The waste materials are then usually contained in proper containers if their current containers are deemed fragile or breakable. Once the waste materials are properly contained, these are then organized and segregated depending on their classification. Proper disposal of these waste materials is then followed. Waste materials that cannot be destroyed are safely contained and locked away properly.

Usually, hazardous waste collection is accompanied by hazardous waste management education for the public. People are educated on the dangerous effects of hazardous wastes on the environment and on the health of the population. They are also taught how to reduce hazardous waste materials in their households and offices. Safe disposal of hazardous waste materials is also a common topic in most hazardous waste management lectures. These are often done to effectively involve the whole community in waste management programs, which could prove to be beneficial for everyone.

Hazardous waste collection is not only done by government agencies. There are also private companies and non-profit organizations that frequently assist communities in regular hazardous waste collection activities and projects. Public health inspectors and even law enforcement officials are involved in the collection of hazardous wastes as well. The protection of the environment from hazardous materials often require the cooperation of all individuals from various sectors of society.

Broken computer monitors are collected as hazardous waste.
Broken computer monitors are collected as hazardous waste.

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