Hazardous Waste Management
Mount Sinai has made an institution-wide commitment to reducing hazardous waste. Already, the Division of Environmental Health and Safety (EnvHS) has reduced chemical waste by 20 percent. This was accomplished by increasing the amount of solvent waste recycled onsite, improving chemical management, and implementing better waste segregation procedures.
To further reduce the amount of hazardous chemical waste – and its impact on the environment – EnvHS has is launching a number of initiatives:
- We are conducting waste stream analyses, and we are teaching our staff to separate hazardous from non-hazardous waste.
- We are reviewing waste-generating processes, and we are researching alternative waste handling processes, such as fuels blending and recycling technologies.
- We are working with laboratory staff to find non-hazardous substitutes for hazardous materials.
- We are researching alternative waste treatment processes, and we are recycling on site solvent wastes for immediate reuse.
- We are coordinating laboratory cleanouts to facilitate the reuse of unwanted chemicals. This avoids generating “unknown” hazardous waste.
The “Drop-N-Swap” Program
To reduce hazardous waste, EnvHS is renovating an old chemical storage room to create a new chemical “drop-n-swap” program. Through this program, chemicals in good, unopened condition will be identified with a bar-code and classified in an online database. Laboratory staff will be able to search the database, request the chemicals they need, and obtain them – free of charge – from the supply.