In general, hazardous wastes are those wastes that have the potential to harm human health or the environment. Hazardous wastes come from many residential and industrial sources and come in many forms. The United States and Canada have developed specific -- though different -- guidelines for hazardous waste treatment and disposal.
Under US EPA regulations, “characteristic hazardous wastes” are defined as wastes that exhibit the following characteristics: ignitability, corrosivity, reactivity, or toxicity.
Canada, under its Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations (TDGR), divides hazardous waste into 10 classes. Three classes, including explosives (administered by the Explosives Act and Regulations) and radioactive material (Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission), are regulated under separate laws. The seven remaining classes of hazardous waste covered by the TDGR include:
SUEZ views the environment, health and safety as a top priority. Through our more than 40 hazardous waste disposal facilities operated worldwide, we have developed a complete specialized process line to safely treat and dispose of hazardous waste.
Waste arrives by means of trailer trucks. Verifications, labeling and regulatory paperwork ensure tracking of the disposal process.
The waste is inspected, analyzed in the laboratory and/or pre-treated (shredded, mixed, resized) before going through the main processes.
Organic wastes are destroyed in the incinerator at temperatures above 1922°F. This achieves a Destructive Removal Efficiency of at least 99.9999% of hazardous organic compounds.
Inorganic liquids are chemically and physically rendered non-hazardous in the “Phys-Chem” process, utilizing a combination of acid/base and redox properties.
Fly ash is mixed with cement, which constitutes one of the many barriers against leaching of trace amounts of heavy metals.
Flue gas scrubbing removes acids and particulates while effluents are cleaned using wastewater treatment techniques.
Stabilized material is disposed of in the on-site Class 1 landfill. Cells are secured with clay, geomembrane and are re-vegetated.
Treated liquid effluents are injected into a deep well roughly 6,000 feet below the surface into a stable geological formation.
Any potential impact of the activities on the environment is closely monitored. Surrounding wildlife, air emissions, surface and ground waters, landfill and deep well integrities are constantly studied in order to verify that the prime goal of the facility is achieved: protect the environment.