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Hazardous and Universal Waste Procedure

It is the intention of the University of Maine at Augusta and the Facilities Management Department to maintain and provide a process for the handling of Universal and Hazardous waste material that is compliant with State and Federal regulation and provides safe and hazard free learning and working environments for our staff, students and visitors. To that end the following procedures and programs have been adopted by the U.M.A. Facilities Dept and submitted to the campus for their information:

  1. When ever the campus at large has issues with or wishes to process Universal or Hazardous waste materials they should contact Administrative Services at Extension 3103 for information and a Work order for pick up if required.
  2. Facilities management will maintain a Universal and Hazardous Waste Storage area to hold collected materials.
  3. The Universal/Hazardous Waste storage area will be maintained and comply with the requirements as set out by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (see attachments for small quantity generators of Hazardous and Universal Wastes)
  4. Proper documentation shall be maintained and employees involved in the collection and or storage of these materials shall be properly trained.
  5. Emergency procedures for dealing with an accidental spill or release of Universal or Hazardous waste materials shall be established.

Attachments: What is Universal Waste

Available for Loan:

  • Handbook for Universal Waste (Maine D.E.P.)
  • Handbook for Hazardous Waste Generators (Maine D.E.P.)

Introduction to Universal Waste

What is Universal Waste?

A universal waste is a hazardous waste that is widely generated. Individuals and small businesses that do not typically generate other hazardous waste generate these wastes. Very often, universal wastes end up in local landfills and town dumps.

In an attempt to encourage recycling and reduce the amount of these wastes that are disposed of in an inappropriate manner, the State of Maine amended the Hazardous Waste Management Rules* to include a category called Universal Wastes.

With these new rules, the State will regulate as universal wastes:

  1. Batteries, because they contain heavy metals, such as lead, cadmium and mercury.
  2. Cathode ray tubes, because of the high lead content in these items.
  3. Certain lamps, because they contain mercury and/or lead.
  4. Mercury thermostats, because of the mercury ampule.
  5. Totally enclosed, non-leaking, polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) ballasts, because PCB’s are suspected to cause cancer in humans and can bioaccumulate in fish and other foods.
  6. Mercury thermometers, ** because of the mercury

** Mercury thermometers are authorized through recent legislation, PL2001, Chapter 373 Section 8, to be managed in accordance with the universal waste rules through policy prior to a universal waste rule modification.