A brief look at household hazardous waste
Household hazardous waste (HHW) includes the following items:
- Paints, dyes, varnishes, lacquers
- Used oils and filters
- Fluorescent-compact lamps and fluorescent tubes
- Batteries and cells
HHW should not be thrown in household trash because it contains toxic substances and heavy metals that are harmful to health and that pose a risk for the environment. If buried, HHW can contaminate soil and groundwater and become a hazard for the workers who handle it. If dropped off at an eco-centre or designated drop-off point, HHW will be recycled, repurposed, reused, or safely eliminated:
- For example, paint is recycled by the Éco-peinture program and transformed by company Laurentide Paint into recycled paint, available as Boomerang-brand products.
- The Société de gestion des huiles usagées states that “used oil is re-refined and re-distilled into regenerated lubricating oil used as fuel for industrial burners or other products."
What can your company do?
At Synertek, we have dedicated a space to collect the HHW we produce. We also provide employees with the opportunity to deposit their HHW in our sorting area to simplify the task.
Our sorting area collects HHW such as batteries, paint, oil, compact fluorescent lamps and fluorescent tubes in addition to other waste such as ink cartridges, used work uniforms, pens, markers, and pencils, and obsolete electronic equipment.
There are HHW depots reserved for individuals and others for businesses. Due to the size of our company and the level of HHW we produce, Synertek disposes of small quantities of HHW of a household nature at the eco-centre. We discard industrial HHW at locations designated specifically for businesses.
Tools and references
To learn where you can find drop-off locations for individuals and/or businesses:
- Recyc-Québec's Ça va où ? search tool
Need sorting bins?
- NI Corporation offers a variety of products designed for HHW management. Their TriSource collection serves HHW disposal needs well.
Need symbols to segregate your bins?
- The Écopatrouille de la MRC de Sept-Rivières site has specifically designed signs and icons available for each waste category.