Hazardous wastes have properties that make it dangerous or potentially harmful to human health or the environment. it is therefore important for manufacturing facilities to implement good waste management practices to ensure hazardous wastes are managed responsibly.

Hazardous Waste Management

In order to ensure all hazardous waste is managed responsibly, the following must be considered:

  • Have you Identified which types of hazardous wastes are generated at the site?
  • Have you Identified the applicable legal requirements for the generation, storage, and disposal of hazardous wastes (as defined by local law and/or brand partner)?
  • Have you obtained the applicable hazardous waste generator and/or discharge licenses and/or permits?
  • Are all hazardous wastes being collected by qualified (licensed) hazardous waste carriers?
  • Have you established a document control procedures to maintain records of all hazardous wastes?


Hazardous wastes posses specific characteristics which make them hazardous (i.e. they are flammable, toxic to the environment, etc.) Hazardous wastes are often grouped into different classes and assigned a hazardous waste number (i.e. HW-001). The document below provides general guidance on determining whether a waste is hazardous, however country-specific definitions and classifications are often defined in local laws and should be consulted when identifying which types of hazardous wastes are generated at your facility.

Hazardous Waste Determination Guidance

Separation & Storage

Hazardous wastes should be separated from non-hazardous waste and further separated from other incompatible hazardous wastes (i.e. flammables, oxidizers).

SDS for materials and their wastes should be reviewed when determining hazardous waste separation and storage requirements. A proper waste separation program will help to isolate and reduce the amount of hazardous waste generated, and may also reduce disposal costs. Clearly marked waste bins should be placed in convenient locations (i.e. nearby hazardous waste generations areas).

For Example: Consistent color-coding of waste bins throughout the facility can help ensure hazardous waste and other waste is properly separated.

Hazardous waste collection or storage areas present similar risks to that of other chemical storage areas, and require safety features for the protection of employees and the environment. By following the good practices outlined below, you can better ensure that your hazardous waste storage areas have the appropriate protections.


Hazardous wastes require special treatment and disposal techniques to eliminate their potential impacts on the environment. To ensure your hazardous wastes are being properly disposed, your company should partner with qualified (licensed) hazardous waste collection and disposal providers. When selecting your waste collectors you should request and review the following:

  • A copy of their business license and operating permit.
  • Detailed information on the types and quantities of hazardous wastes they can accept and process.
    • Verify that they can accept the specific class of hazardous wastes that your facility generates.

Maintain Records of Disposal

  • Ensure all legally required hazardous waste manifests are obtained and that all appropriate records are kept on file.
    • Records should typically be kept for a minimum of 5yrs, or longer if required by local law.

Relevant Higg Index Facility Environment Module (FEM) 3.0 indicators:

Section 5: Waste

Hazardous Waste Resources

Hazardous Waste Management Good Practices

Hazardous Waste Management Checklist

IFC Environmental Health and Safety Guideline – Waste Management


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Florence Welch wrote: May 18, 2019

It sure got my attention when you stressed the importance of proper handling of hazardous waste disposal in order to reduce health and environmental impacts. In my opinion, manufacturing and industrial businesses must employ strategic hazardous waste management in their businesses in order to preserve the land and the surrounding area near their factories. Government agencies should monitor and impose stiffer fines for those who don't adhere to local and global standards when it comes to the handling of these wastes because it can affect the health of thousands of people. http://www.ohanaenviron.com/hazardous-material

Malia Davis wrote: Nov 30, 2018

I hadn't thought about how proper storage and disposal of hazardous wastes could help you avoid problems with fires, especially if the waste is flammable. I have been looking for a training course that could teach me about all of those nuances of waste removal so that I could have a career in this field. I definitely would want to be safe from things like fires, and if a training course could help me be prepared and know how to handle things, I'm definitely on board with the idea.