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Chemical Waste FAQs

Q1: How do I properly dispose of ________?

A1: If you are uncertain of how to dispose of something, please use the "askEHS" system and include the relevant information, such as chemical constituents and relevant Safety Data Sheets.

Q2: Does EHS provide chemical waste disposal training?

A2: Yes.  If you are generating chemical waste, you will need to complete EHS's "Chemical Waste Disposal" online training module.  You can register for the training here.

Q3: What is a suitable container for chemical waste?

A3: It is the waste generator's responsibility to ensure that the chemical wastes are compatible with each other and their containers.  Waste container management is discussed in Section 4.3.2 of the Hazardous Waste Manual.

Q4: Where do I find containers for my chemical waste?

A4: EHS does not provide chemical waste containers.  Glass and plastic bottles of various sizes can be purchased at the Chemistry & Chemical Biology stockroom located in G75 of the Olin Chemistry Research Wing.


Q5: How do I get chemical waste labels?A5: Please submit a request via the "askEHS" system or email

Q6: I found an unwanted container of chemicals and I don't know what's in it.  How do I properly dispose of it?

A6: Please complete an unknown chemical waste characterization form for each container of unknown chemicals and submit it to EH&S for hazardous waste disposal.

Q7: Where do I find DOT boxes for my chemical waste containers?

A7: DOT boxes area regularly stocked at the following locations:

Locations of DOT Boxes

Facility Room
Bard Hall B60A
Biotechnology Facility G43
Olin Chemistry Research Wing G75C
Physical Sciences Building G20
Bradfield Hall G01A
Human Ecology Building 107
Olin Hall 111
Plant Science Building Loading dock
Stocking Hall 185
NYS Veterinary Diagnostic Lab Loading dock
JA Baker Institute B18
Veterinary Medical Center C1-053 loading dock

Q8: How do I submit a pick-up request for chemical waste?

A8: Please complete the online chemical waste pick up request form

Q9: I have several small containers of the same waste.  Do I need to complete a waste label for each container?

A9: You may collect small containers with the same waste in a sealable bag (e.g., Ziploc) or container and complete 1 label for the waste and place it on the outside of the bag/container.

Q10: How do I dispose of empty chemical bottles/containers?

A10: Please see section 7.7 of Cornell's Hazardous Waste Manual

Q11: How do I recycle this scrap metal?

A11: If the scrap metal is uncontaminated, you can contact R5 Operations at 607-254-1666,

Q12: How do I dispose of chemically contaminated materials?

A12: Please see section 7.7 of Cornell's Hazardous Waste Manual.

Q13: Does EH&S still have a mercury thermometer exchange program?

A13: Yes.  Please see the mercury thermometer exchange program

Q14: Where do I learn more about hazardous waste and hazardous waste management at Cornell?

A14: Please consult Cornell's Hazardous Waste Manual.  If you can't find the information you're looking for, please submit a question to the "askEHS" system.


Q15: I need to clean out my laboratory space and get rid of a bunch of old chemicals.  Where do I begin?

A15: Please contact the EHS Hazardous Materials Management group and we will setup an initial consultation in your lab space to discuss your cleanout.