Household Hazardous Waste
|Waste Project||State and Local Programs|
Common household items such as paints, cleaners, oils, batteries, and pesticides contain hazardous components. One way to help determine if your household waste has hazardous components is to read the labels on products. Labels that read danger, warning, caution, toxic, corrosive, flammable, or poison identify products that might contain hazardous materials. Leftover portions of these products are called household hazardous waste (HHW). These products, if mishandled, can be dangerous to your health and the environment.
Although we cannot completely stop using hazardous products, we can make sure that leftovers are managed properly. The best way to handle HHW is to reduce the amount initially generated by giving leftover products to someone else to use. To deal with household hazardous waste, many communities have set up collection programs to prevent HHW from being disposed of in MSW landfills and combustors. These programs ensure the safe disposal of HHW in facilities designed to treat or dispose of hazardous waste. More than 3,000 HHW collection programs exist in the United States.
The Household Hazardous Waste Project promotes the safe use, storage and disposal of hazardous materials by educating consumers to:
- Identify and avoid potentially hazardous products
- Buy only what is needed, use it up completely, or share leftovers with someone who can use it
- Recycle those materials that can be recycled
- Dispose of leftover or unwanted products through hazardous waste collection facilities
Almost every home contains hazardous products, or products that can harm human health or the environment if improperly handled. They are products used in cleaning, home improvements, automobile maintenance, lawn and garden care, hobbies, and a variety of other tasks.
The Household Hazardous Waste Project is maintained by the University of Missouri Extension.Tox Town is designed to give consumers information on:
- Everyday locations where you might find toxic chemicals
- Non-technical descriptions of chemicals
- Links to selected, authoritative chemical information
- How the environment can impact human health
- Web resources on environmental health topics
Tox Town uses color, graphics, sounds and animation to add interest to learning about connections between chemicals, the environment, and the public's health. Tox Town's target audience is students above elementary-school level, educators, and the general public. It is a companion to the extensive information in the TOXNET® collection of databases that are typically used by toxicologists and health professionals.
Tox Town is maintained by the U.S. National Library of Medicine. Tox Town tiene versión español.
- Household Hazardous Materials (HHMs) Regional Collection Centers , includes Contact information for all RCC facilities and Regional Collection Center Grant Application and Guidelines.
- State Wide: contact your Solid Waste Management District for HHW program information.
- Kansas City Area A list of programs is maintained by the Mid America Planning Council.
More on Household Hazardous Waste, including EPA publications and a list of suggested alternatives to common hazardous household items, can be found on the EPA national website.
Additional information on Batteries can be found on the EPA Product Stewardship site.