The Importance of Proper Aerosol Can Disposal

aerosol cans

Aerosol cans are almost an everyday necessity for many of us, but did you know that improper disposal can have dangerous consequences? This article dives into the Universal Waste Rule and its relevance to aerosols. Also discussed is why it's important to check local regulations before discarding them and how proper disposal helps protect humans, animals, and our environment as a whole.

The Universal Waste Rule and Aerosol Cans

In 2019, the Universal Waste Rule was expanded to include aerosol cans as hazardous waste. This means that these types of products can now be managed using the same streamlined guidelines used for other universal wastes like batteries and light bulbs - a move which helps reduce disposal requirements while increasing consistency in dangerous-waste management throughout states nationwide. Through this change, EPA aims at encouraging everyone to be more responsible in disposing of aerosols.

Nevertheless, it is still important to follow all local regulations and guidelines in aerosol can disposal. The Universal Waste Rule is only applicable to specific types of aerosol cans, therefore, it is crucial to double-check everything with your local waste management agency regarding the disposal regulations in your area.

Local Regulations and Waste Management

As we have noted, it is important to stay informed on local regulations when disposing of aerosol cans. Although under Universal Waste Rule, there may be additional requirements particular to your jurisdiction that must be taken into account; failure to do so could lead you down a potentially costly road. Always consult with waste management agencies for the most updated guidelines and avoid unwanted surprises.

How to Dispose of Aerosol Cans

Proper aerosol can disposal is essential for making sure hazardous materials don't end up in our environment. Knowing whether the can is empty or full should be your first step. When the aerosol can does not spray and the pressure inside is released, then the can is considered as empty. Otherwise especially if the can still spray, it is still considered as full.

Recycling facilities will often accept and reprocess metal cans when they are completely emptied of their contents. Therefore, full cans must not be put into regular trash bins. Instead, take them to a local household waste collection site that offers proper management typically free of charge.

Why Proper Disposal of Aerosol Cans is Important

Aerosol cans provide us with convenience, but improper disposal can create serious safety hazards and long-lasting environmental issues. Fires or explosions are potential risks posed by aerosol cans that have not been disposed of correctly; on top of this, it takes hundreds of years for them to decompose in a landfill. But through appropriate recycling or taking full aerosols containers to hazardous waste collection points we can help prevent these dangers from occurring within our communities and safeguard the environment at the same time.

The material provided in this article is for general information purposes only. It is not intended to replace professional/legal advice or substitute government regulations, industry standards, or other requirements specific to any business/activity. While we made sure to provide accurate and reliable information, we make no representation that the details or sources are up-to-date, complete or remain available. Readers should consult with an industrial safety expert, qualified professional, or attorney for any specific concerns and questions.


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Author: Herbert Post

Born in the Philadelphia area and raised in Houston by a family who was predominately employed in heavy manufacturing. Herb took a liking to factory processes and later safety compliance where he has spent the last 13 years facilitating best practices and teaching updated regulations. He is married with two children and a St Bernard named Jose. Herb is a self-described compliance geek. When he isn’t studying safety reports and regulatory interpretations he enjoys racquetball and watching his favorite football team, the Dallas Cowboys.