What is Hazardous Waste?
Over the last few decades, Australians have become more aware of the importance of sustainable waste management and recycling. As a result of intense awareness programmes undertaken by the Government, recycling has increased.
At the same time, our lifestyle changes, and changes in consumption habits are producing more waste ? including a lot of hazardous waste.
What does ?hazardous waste? mean?
Any waste product that can cause harm to the environment or to human beings can be called hazardous waste. By definition, this includes any waste having certain characteristics like:
??????????? Toxic or Poisonous
??????????? Flammable or explosive
Wastes having these properties are produced in households as well as in our workplaces and communities. They include everyday items like: batteries, motor oils and fuels like petrol or kerosene, CFLs, solvent-based paints, pesticides and chemicals, e-waste including old computer equipment, televisions and mobile phones, medical and industrial wastes etc.
How should they be handled and disposed of?
Hazardous wastes must never be allowed to enter our waterways and from there, the food chain. This means that they should not be disposed of in household bins and should not be flushed down the toilet or down drains. In fact, there are serious financial penalties for improper disposal or dumping of hazardous wastes.
Many Queensland councils have recycling programmes for different kinds of hazardous wastes. If not, they can help find collection centres or programmes in your locality. Industrial and hospital wastes have special regulations and guidelines for their disposal.
Usually, recycling programmes are available for most electronic equipment, mobile phones and batteries, car batteries and other rechargeable batteries, printer cartridges, CFLs etc. Unused medicines can be taken to a pharmacist for disposal.
How can we reduce the amount of hazardous waste?
Disposal of hazardous waste involves costly treatments including incineration. Certain waste, like that containing asbestos, is currently sealed and buried at landfill, as current technology does not offer a viable recycling option for asbestos wastes.
You can reduce the amount of hazardous waste at an individual level by:
??????????? Switch to eco-friendly cleaning products, non-toxic paints, and natural pesticides and avoid aerosol cans.
??????????? If using solvent-based paints, buy only what you need and avoid wastage.
??????????? Trade or sell old models of mobile phones, laptops and tablets, or donate to a local charity.
At T2 Environmental, we use eco-friendly products and processes for all our work and help companies in Brisbane and throughout South East Queensland to work towards a ?Zero Waste to Landfill? goal through our waste and recycling management services.
To find out more about our services and how we conduct sustainable waste management, call us on 1300 578707