Chapter 10 - Haz Chem Waste


10.0 Hazardous Chemical Waste Disposal

Hazardous chemical waste storage and disposal is regulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In New York State, the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) regulates chemical waste management activities. All University chemical wastes are subject to inspection and enforcement actions by the EPA or the DEC.

EHS provides the following chemical waste compliance services:

  • Management of University main hazardous waste accumulation area. 
  • Collection of chemical waste. 
  • General compliance assistance.


10.1 Hazardous Chemical Waste Container Requirements (Top)

Within your work area, the following practices must be followed for proper management of hazardous waste:

  1. Determine if your unwanted materials pose a significant risk requiring management as hazardous waste. 
  2. Determine if chemical deactivation or drain disposal is an option. 
  3. Label containers of hazardous chemical wastes with the identity of the chemical(s) AND the words “Hazardous Waste” or label with a Cornell University Hazardous Waste label. 
  4. Keep containers of hazardous chemical wastes closed at all times when they are not in use. 
  5. Store hazardous waste containers within the room in which they are generated in.
  6. Recommended practices that should be followed:
  • Always maintain a neat and orderly workplace. 
  • Use secondary containment bins or trays to store your chemical waste containers in. 
  • Store your waste containers in a designated place. 

It is the responsibility of the Principal Investigator and laboratory supervisor to ensure that personnel working in laboratories under their supervision are familiar with and follow hazardous chemical waste container requirements and have attended EHS Chemical Waste Disposal training.


10.2 Hazardous Waste Pickup Procedures (Top)

To have your hazardous waste picked up by EHS, please complete the following procedures:

  1. Place an EH&S Hazardous Waste label on each container.
    • Labels are available by calling 607-255-8200 or "askEHS".
  2. Fill out the waste label and list all of the ingredients (no trade names or chemical formulas, please). Do not put a date on the tag until you are ready to dispose of the waste through EHS. 
  3. Peel off the bottom copy and stick it on the waste container. 
  4. Place the waste containers in a DOT compliant box (has a U/N symbol on it). Place the top copy of the waste label inside the box.
  5. Request a waste pick up by filling out the online request for chemical waste removal.      


Boxes are available from:

  • Bard, Kimball, Thurston waste generators: Contact the Building Coordinator at 607-255-3579. Boxes are stored in room B60A, Bard Hall. 
  • Biotech/Weill Hall waste generators: Boxes are located in the gas cylinder storage room in the basement between the buildings. Contact the Biotech Building Coordinator at 607-254-4583. 
  • Clark Hall waste generators: Contact the Building Coordinator, phone 607-255-3524. Boxes are kept in stock room on ground floor. 
  • Comstock Hall waste generators: Contact the Building Coordinator. 
  • Corson-Mudd Hall waste generators: Contact the Building Coordinator, phone 607-254-4395. 
  • Emerson-Bradfield Hall waste generators: Boxes can be obtained from the mail room in G03, Bradfield Hall. 
  • J.A. Baker waste generators: Boxes are stored in room B18, basement near the elevator. 
  • Martha Van Rensselaer waste generators: Boxes are stored at the loading dock in the sub-basement. 
  • Olin Hall: Contact the Building Coordinator, phone 607-255-3540. 
  • Plant Science waste generators: Contact the Building Coordinator, phone 607-255-7826. Boxes are stored at loading dock. 
  • Vet College Complex waste generators, including Schurman Hall, Vet Research Tower and Vet Medical Center. Boxes can be obtained from the 1st floor Custodial Supply area - please see staff in the mail room (Vet Medical Center) for access to the storage facility.

The following types of materials have different requirements for disposal: 

 If you need further information, refer to the Hazardous Waste Manual, or call EHS at 607-255-8200, or send an e-mail to "askEHS".


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Other Resources

Biohazardous Materials Disposal CRTs (computer monitors and televisions) Disposal
Radioactive Materials Disposal

Proper Labeling of Hazardous Waste Tip Sheet