Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 78.50
Liaison Kira Stoll
Submission Date Aug. 16, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of California, Berkeley
OP-21: Hazardous Waste Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Kira Stoll
Director of Sustainability
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have strategies in place to safely dispose of all hazardous, special (e.g. coal ash), universal, and non-regulated chemical waste and seek to minimize the presence of these materials on campus?:
Yes

A brief description of steps taken to reduce hazardous, special (e.g. coal ash), universal, and non-regulated chemical waste:

The primary incentive to reduce the generation of hazardous waste is to minimize the purchase of unnecessary or excess quantities of chemicals, since these items must eventually be disposed of as hazardous waste. UC Berkeley Environmental Health & Safety charges Principal Investigators for chemical waste disposal from their laboratories. EH&S also promotes additional waste minimization techniques by way of education and a fact sheet.

Approximately 80% of chemical waste is considered "non routine" (research, construction and maintenance) and therefore reduction strategies are difficult to implement. Non-routine wastes are excluded from California's SB 14 Waste Minimization Plan for just that reason.


A brief description of how the institution safely disposes of hazardous, universal, and non-regulated chemical waste:

All chemical waste is carefully screened to ensure it is managed safely. Any chemical waste that does not pass California's strict, multi-agency disposal criteria is considered hazardous waste and collected for disposal.

Campus researchers prepare waste for disposal and utilize an online system to request pickups. Environmental Health & Safety transports chemical waste to a state-of-the-art hazardous waste facility on campus. Technicians and specialists lab pack or otherwise manage items at the waste facility, ship them for off-site disposal and charge the cost back to the laboratory. EH&S summarizes safe and compliant chemical waste disposal procedures in a fact sheet.

Universal waste batteries are collected by individual departments throughout the campus and collected by EH&S for off-site management. All light bulbs (except incandescent) and electronic wastes are also collected for recycling. EH&S summarized these recycling procedures in a fact sheet. Other electronic waste, such as computers and monitors, is collected and managed by Campus Surplus.


A brief description of any significant hazardous material release incidents during the previous three years, including volume, impact and response/remediation:

In the previous three years, no significant hazardous material release incidents have occurred.


A brief description of any inventory system employed by the institution to facilitate the reuse or redistribution of laboratory chemicals:

The College of Chemistry generates roughly 70% of the all chemical waste on campus. The College maintains its own in-house chemical storage and reuse facility to encourage reuse and reduce disposal costs. The impressive 13,000-item reuse program is managed by a dedicated staff chemist. Approximately 3,000 items are reused within the College every year.

For the remainder of campus, EH&S just launched a new Chemical Inventory System in 2015. Labs will soon be able to identify chemicals that are no longer needed. Once implemented, items up for reuse can be advertised and redistributed by EH&S.


Does the institution have or participate in a program to responsibly recycle, reuse, and/or refurbish electronic waste generated by the institution?:
Yes

Does the institution have or participate in a program to responsibly recycle, reuse, and/or refurbish electronic waste generated by students?:
Yes

A brief description of the electronic waste recycling program(s), including information about how electronic waste generated by the institution and/or students is recycled:

UC Berkeley departments with unwanted electronics contact Cal Surplus for a waste pickup. Cal Surplus employs an IT specialist to refurbish reusable computers and peripherals. Non-reusable electronics become e-waste and are shipped to the permitted and certified e-stewards recycler. EH&S periodically (1) audits campus departments to ensure they recycle their electronics; (2) trains refuse drivers on how to identify e-waste in the trash; (3) provides stickers for garbage cans/dumpsters prohibiting disposal of e-waste into the trash; and (4) provides guidance on its web site.


Is the institution’s electronic waste recycler certified under the e-Stewards and/or Responsible Recycling (R2) standards?:
Yes

Electronic waste recycled or otherwise diverted from the landfill or incinerator during the most recent year for which data is available during the previous three years:
62 Tons

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Information for this field came from the UC Berkeley Environmental Health & Safety office. The campus' electronic waste is handled by CEAR, or California Electronic Asset Recovery, which is certified under e-Stewards and Responsible Recycling. Recycling data from calendar year 2017.

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.