When you’ve got hazardous waste in your home, it can be both scary and confusing. You want this potentially harmful product or chemical either stored safely if you’re using it or disposed of, but disposal itself is difficult, as often these products cannot be thrown in the trash or poured down the drain. Thankfully, there are many resources out there that can help you safely deal with household hazardous waste – today we’re going to go over the specifics and how to act on them.
Dealing with Hazardous Waste in Massachusetts
This article is going to specifically focus on hazardous waste in Massachusetts. While in the US, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provides regulations, it’s up to each state to enforce these rules and provide additional ones for the safety of businesses, communities, and the environment. This means that state to state the rules you need to follow may be broadly the same, but specific rules – including how to dispose of hazardous waste, how much you can have, additional types, etc. – can vary greatly.
Resources for Learning More About Household Hazardous Waste
Below is a list of resources that are great options in your community.
Hazardous Waste Resources in Your Community
You may have useful resources directly in your community, often in the form of town or city websites run by your local government and boards of health (sometimes referred to as a health department). Here are some quick ways of finding yours:
- Mass.gov List of City and Town Websites: A comprehensive list of all city and town websites on the Mass.gov website.
- NACCHO List of Boards of Health (MA): The National Association of County Health Officials has a great searchable list of local health officials by state and city.
If your local Board of Health currently doesn’t provide hazardous waste disposal services, send them a link to our Board of Health Services page.
Hazardous Waste Resources for MA
For all waste management (including hazardous) and environmental concerns in MA on the state level, your first stop should be the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP). Their website doesn’t always do an excellent job of separating commercial and residential concerns, so here are a few links to get you started:
- MassDEP Laws, Regulations, and Policies: Covers rules and regulations about environmental and waste management, including regulation and enforcement.
- MassDEP Hazardous Waste Management: A page with helpful links on everything related to hazardous waste, including laws and facilities.
- Safely Manage Hazardous Household Products: A search system to find out about common household products and how to dispose of them, including hazardous waste.
More Hazardous Waste Resources
Here at NEDT, our goal is to fill the gap between what your local government provides and your personal needs. We believe that you should buy only what you need, use up what you have, and recycle any leftovers, and want to give you the tools and information you need to be safe. Here are a few to look at:
- NEDT Fact Sheets & Links: This page has links to PDFs on various common household hazardous products and links for further information.
- The NEDT Blog: This blog acts as a resource for household hazardous waste and related topics, including deep dives on specific products and problems.
- Hazardous Household Rating Quiz: Take our quiz to learn more about the hazardous waste you may have in your home and how to deal with it.
We are also on standby if you have any questions or need help disposing of your household hazardous waste. You can stop by one of our NEDT Collection Centers, contact us if you have questions or want to use our pick-up service, or call us at 1 (866) 769-1621.