Environmental Health & Safety

Waste Management


Waste management is the collection, transport, processing, recycling or disposal of waste materials. Our Waste Management program help you manage hazardous chemical, radioactive, medical and other wastes safely and legally. We deliver online Waste Pickup Services where you can request pickup of hazardous, biohazardous, or radioactive waste.




Hazardous Waste Management training Biohazardous/Medical Waste Pickup Request 

Biohazardous/Medical waste
Containers: Closing containers
Containers: Empty container management

Empty Containers Fact Sheet

Containers: DTSC Empty Containers Fact Sheet
Hazardous Waste Disposal Requirements poster
Hazardous Waste Determination Guidance

Hazardous Chemicals list
No Sharp in Trash sign
Radioactive Waste Management (Radiation Safety Manual)

Hazardous Waste Determination Guidance

See this Hazardous Waste Determination Guidance document for information and links to resources to help you determine whether or not your waste is hazardous.

Hazardous Chemical Waste

Federal and State regulations define hazardous wastes as a substance which poses a hazard to human health or the environment when improperly managed. A chemical waste is considered hazardous if it is either listed on one of the lists found in Federal or State regulations or if it exhibits one or more of the four following characteristics:

  1. Ignitable - ignitable wastes generally are liquids with a flash point below 60°C or 140°F (however, just because a material has a higher flash point, it still cannot be drain disposed).
  2. Corrosive - corrosive wastes are generally aqueous wastes with a pH less than or equal to two (2) or greater than or equal to 12.5 (although UCLA policy includes any waste that is not neutral).
  3. Reactive - reactive wastes are those wastes that are unstable, explosive, capable of detonation or react violently with water.
  4. Toxic - a chemical that poses a hazard to health or the environment (this can be a gray area).

To assist in waste determination, review the Hazardous Chemicals List.

Waste Dispoal Requirements Poster
Waste Disposal Requirements Poster 

What are the guidelines for handling hazardous chemical waste?

The proper management of hazardous waste is essential to protect the health and safety of the University community and to insure compliance with the laws and regulations. 

Make sure that no hazardous materials are placed into regular solid waste containers, flushed down the drain or otherwise inappropriately disposed of. if there is any doubt, contact Environmental Health and Safety (951) 827-4248 or (951) 827-5518.

Whenever possible, store flammable waste liquids and waste corrosive liquids in a cabinet designed for storage of these classes of chemicals.

Containers marked with biohazard or radioactive warning labels only are not acceptable for chemical or mixed waste disposal. Never use orange biohazard bags. All chemical waste must be in appropriate containers. This does not include red biohazard bags.

Good housekeeping must be maintained at all times in the storage location (s). All storage containers should be inspected daily to monitor for leaks or storage practice deficiencies that could lead to leaks. A container holding hazardous waste must always be closed during storage, except when it is necessary to add or remove waste.

The use of secondary contaiment is particularly effective in guarding against leaking material escaping in such a manner as to compromise safety or the environment.

How do I request a hazardous waste pickup?

WASTe for chemical hazardous waste

Online Biohazardous / Medical Waste Pickup Request Form for biohazardous waste and sharps

WASTe for radioactive waste

What are my responsibilities ?

  • Label your chemical, radioactive and biological waste.
  • Properly segregate incompatible chemicals and appropriate storage of hazardous waste.
  • Manage your empty containers.

How do I keep myself safe?

  • Wear your Personal Protective Equipment when you working around chemicals.
  • Always review the Material Date Safety Sheet (MSDS) of all materials before you begin to use the substances.
  • Review the Summary of Waste Disposal Requirements

No Sharps in Trash Sign

What are the guidelines for handling physically hazardous (sharps) waste?

  • Uncontaminated broken glass and other sharp objects must be placed in a box for broken glass. Boxes designed to collect broken glass are available thought a varity of vendors including Fisher Safety.
  • Medical sharps must be collected in a red sharps container. Medical Waste needle containers are available from EH&S.

For more information

What does fifty thousand dollars of radioactive waste disposal look like?

Check out these videos from King County in Washington State

Here is a copy of the California Hazardous Waste Treatment allowance regulation: http://www.ehs.ucsb.edu/units/hw/hwrsc/hwpdf/ab_966_bill_19980915_chapte.pdf 

For more information, contact radiobiowastepickup@ucr.edu (951) 827-5528.

More Information

General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

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Environmental Health & Safety

Environmental Health & Safety
Environmental Health & Safety

Tel: (951) 827-5528
Fax: (951) 827-5122
E-mail: ehs@ucr.edu