22) What kind of hazardous waste does your school generate and what
are the sources?
Science classes such as chemistry and biology generate lab wastes.
Campus transportation vehicles generate motor oil and antifreeze, which
are both recycled. Medical wastes are generated at the Student Health
Center. Asbestos are also generated from the demolition of old buildings
and remodeling projects. Typically all the asbestos generated were
23) How much hazardous waste does your campus generate annually?
In 1999 there were 312 tons of hazardous waste generated on campus.
This is not a typical number. The University Village II project included
a large amount of demolition work that created asbestos waste. During
an average year there is only 30-60 tons of hazardous waste generated,
but the number can vary annually due to specific projects that are taking
24) How has this figure changed over the past five years?
Over the past five years this figure has declined due to the reduction
in big asbestos jobs and lab waste.
25) How is this waste disposed of?
Much of the waste is recycled such as the motor oil. Some of
the waste is incinerated, mainly that which is generated from the health
center. If the waste is not incinerated or recycled then it is most
likely landfilled, which is typically the last option.
26) How much is recycled? Incinerated? Landfilled?
Recycled: 400 gallons of
25,000 linear feet of fluorescent light bulbs
650 gallons of used motor oil
225 pounds of non-PCB light ballasts
50 pounds of lab chemicals.
Incinerated: 600 pounds
of PCB ballasts
3,972 pounds of lab wastes
Landfilled: In 1998 there
was 302 tons of asbestos landfilled due to a construction project.
In a typical year there is only 10-15 tons landfilled.
27) What were the total hazardous-waste disposal costs for the last
For the 1999 academic year the total cost for hazardous waste disposal
was $140,000. Out of this total $17,000 went towards permits and
taxes, and $6,000 went towards radioactive waste disposal. Administration
and recycling contracts are also included in the total.
28) How have these costs changed over the past five years?
Over the past five years there has been more money spent on recycling
and less spent on wastes sent to a landfill, etc.
29) What is being done on campus to minimize the quantity of hazardous
substances used and waste generated?
Mercury thermometers are being replaced with alcohol ones, chemicals
are recycled between the Biology and Chemistry departments, wastes that
are used and generated are being minimized, chemicals are no longer permitted
to be surplused in the Biology and Chemistry departments, and recycling
efforts are made more often on and off campus.
30) Have microscale chemistry techniques/surplus chemical exchange
programs been initiated? If so, please describe. Including date
of implementation and cost savings to date.
The university initiated the conversion to microscale techniques in
organic laboratory courses (CHEM 28,70,170L, and 172) in the early 1990’s.
Shortly thereafter the general chemistry course for applied science majors
(CHEM 27) also adopted these microscale techniques. In 1997 a laboratory
manual was adopted for the general chemistry courses (CHEM 37&38) that
utilizes microscale techniques. All of the biochemistry laboratories
have always used microscale experimentation techniques. The advantages
of microscale techniques have not only included cost savings in chemicals
and waste disposal, but there is also less equipment breakage, lab safety
and air quality has improved, and the cost for equipment is generally lower
than regular sized versions. After the initial startup costs (which
were covered by funding from the California Lottery) it is estimated that
the Chemistry Department saves $2,000-$4,000 per year. The cost/savings
are not tracked separately. Hazardous waste disposal costs are not
paid for out of the Chemistry Department budget, so additional savings
accrue to the accounts of the office of Environmental Health and Safety.
On a side note, one of the Chemistry Department faculty is a co-author
of a nationally used laboratory textbook for general chemistry that has
introduced microscale techniques into the general chemistry courses of
60-70 colleges and universities nationwide. This in turn affects
the laboratory work of over 10,000 students annually.
31) If the Chemistry Department has implemented a microscale laboratory
program, how many courses use microscale techniques and how many students
does this include?
Microscale techniques have been incorporated into the following courses;
the typical annual enrollments are listed in the parentheses.
CHEM 27 (267)
CHEM 28 (180)
CHEM 37 (370)
CHEM 38 (165)
CHEM 70 (156)
CHEM 154 (26)
CHEM 170L (70)
CHEM 170M (10)
CHEM 172 (6)
CHEM 251 (200)
32) Roughly, what portion of the chemistry program does this represent?
Almost all of the laboratory programs in CSU, Chico’s Chemistry Department
use microscale techniques. There are only a few experiments where
pedagogical issues require that larger portions of chemicals be used.
33) Does your school have a system for tracking and inventorying
hazardous chemical bought and used? If so, please describe.
Yes. Each department that buys and uses hazardous chemicals has
a system for tracking and inventorying what is purchased and on hand.
All chemicals purchased are inventoried beginning at the point of receipt.
An MSDS that delineates all potential hazards is delivered with every order.
An annual inventory is conducted of all chemicals in stock and includes
quantity and storage location. All hazardous materials are tracked
from the point of waste generation at a department level through treatment
or disposal. Each department then reports to the Office of the Vice
President for Business and Finance and the Environmental Management, Health,
and Safety office.