Hazardous Waste Management

The following page is meant to help from starting a waste bottle to sending it out for disposal using the online hazardous waste pickup request system Chematix.

(If you would like to navigate the DEHS page directly, please follow this link)



Hazardous Waste Training

Everyone creating hazardous waste must complete the online waste module. Hazardous waste practices should be reviewed as part of annual lab specific training.

Waste Labels

Make sure you have yellow chemical waste labels for any bottle used for manifesting hazardous waste. The yellow labels are kept in the stock room and the CEMS DSO also has a roll. Or call DEHS at: 612-626-1604 or sending an e-mail to: hazwaste@umn.edu. These materials will be shipped to your University mailbox.

IMPORTANT: write the FULL chemical name on the label. It is only acceptable to write a chemical formula or abbreviation if the corresponding hazard class box at the bottom of the yellow label is checked. (e.g. write "Isopropyl Alcohol" or "2-propanol" not "C3H7OH" or "IPA")


Select Containers

There are small and large bottles available in the stockroom. Empty reagent bottles are often reused to collect waste. Use caution and only reuse for the same hazard class. https://z.umn.edu/MTchemicalcontainer

Select a waste container that will be compatible with your intended waste, capable of secure closure and in a convenient size. https://z.umn.edu/cse-select-hw-containers

Needles & razors blades must go in a sharps container https://z.umn.edu/cse-hw-sharps

Solid waste ≠ Miscellaneous. Silica, wipes, sharps, small bottles and sample vials of different hazard classes often get thrown together. This is NOT okay and your waste won’t be picked up. Review the link below for how these materials need to be separated. https://z.umn.edu/hazwcontaminatedlabware

Check Waste Compatibility

Before adding to any waste bottle, check if the compounds are compatible to share a waste bottle. Search the chemical names here and compare the drum designation codes (DDC) to the following guidelines.

"Use the drum designation code (DDC) to segregate incompatible chemicals in containers. Generally, DDC numbers 05, 08 and 18 organic material can be stored together. Especially separate acids (02) from bases (01); oxidizers (16) away from organics (05, 18xx, 08); water away from any water sensitive compound (xxWS); cyanides (18CN) from acids (02); and organic acids (02OA) from oxidizing acids (nitric, fuming sulfuric, perchloric acids)"



Active Waste Bottles

All waste must be kept closed when you are not currently adding to it. (You must be within arm’s length of the bottle while it is open.) https://z.umn.edu/cse-HW-keep-closed

Liquid Hazardous Waste MUST be in secondary containment. https://z.umn.edu/hw-secondary-containment, https://z.umn.edu/jstsecondarycontainment

Try to store flammable waste bottles > 1 L in a flammable storage cabinet when not in frequent use. If waste bottles are in a tray in the fume hood try to elevate these trays so air flow isn’t blocked.

Requesting Waste Pick-Up

Click on “Create Waste Pickup Worksheet”

A DEHS representative will pick up the waste from your lab.

Until then, keep it stored in secondary containment and away from high-traffic areas.

*If your waste is not picked up in a week, check that in addition to “Create a waste card” you also clicked on “Pickup”.

If a pickup has been requested but not picked up, contact hazwaste@umn.edu.

Common Incidents

The most common waste bottle explosions involve a small amount of nitric acid and a solvent. Always dispose of nitric acid by itself, don’t add other wastes to it.



Other Wastes

Equipment can be disposed of through ReUse. Attach this form http://z.umn.edu/reusepickup

Glass waste boxes need to be sealed for pickup. Storing in a tray is recommended. BTW – Consider the amount of broken glass your lab generates. Are you sure everyone picks up ALL the tiny shards? If you were to walk barefoot in the lab what would happen? https://z.umn.edu/glasswasteinjury

Only non-hazardous materials are allowed to be disposed of down the drain. Heavy sediment, agar, LN and dry ice do not go in the sink. https://z.umn.edu/cse-lab-sinks

Biohazardous materials users need to have a completed waste disposal template. https://bohd.umn.edu/biohazardous-and-infectious-waste

Some buildings have a red bag disposal service: https://z.umn.edu/cse-red-bag-biowaste