What are Hazardous Wastes?

Hazardous wastes are those wastes which, due to their nature and quantity, are potentially hazardous to human health and the environment. As a rule, hazardous wastes require special handling, labeling, storage, transportation and disposal techniques to eliminate or reduce the hazard.

About Us

In an effort to improve regulatory compliance and general awareness of the legal and technical conditions for the safe management of hazardous wastes, the BC Environment Industry Association, with support from Ministry of Environment, has launched a two-stage Compliance Improvement Project for key industry stakeholders.

The first stage of the Compliance Improvement Project involved the development of a series of Fact Sheets broken down by sectors, indicating in easy to read terms the information needed by generators, transporters and processors of hazardous wastes to be in full compliance with established regulations.

The second stage of the Project involved creation of a new information portal dedicated to the hazardous waste management community - www.hazwastebc.com - that provides easy access to the above noted Fact Sheets, downloadable forms, essential contact information, and links to other sources of information.

The hazwastebc.com website is an educational resource for the all companies, municipal authorities, employees and for anyone involved with hazardous waste management in British Columbia.

Emergency Response

Below are BCEIA members who are Audited Spill Response Companies:

Eastern Canada Marine Response corporation - ECRC

Canadian Emergency Response Contractors' Alliance – CERCA

24 Hour Spill Reporting: 1.800.663.3456 (British Columbia) - All Spills
West Coast Marine Spill Reporting: 1.800.645.7911 (BC, WA, OR, CA) - Ocean Only

Transport Canada Emergency Response Support

Transport Canada also supports emergency response and first responders through its Canadian Transport Emergency Centre (CANUTEC), which is staffed by professional scientists prepared to assist emergency response personnel in handling dangerous goods emergencies.

CANUTEC scientists are knowledgeable and experienced in understanding and interpreting technical information and providing emergency response advice to first responders. The centre operates 24 hours a day and handles over 30,000 phone calls a year.

CANUTEC has available, on its website, electronic copies of the current North America Emergency Response Guidebook (http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/canutec/guide-menu-227.htm). It is an informative and comprehensive guide designed for use at a dangerous goods incident.

Emergency: 613.996.6666 / Cellular: *666 (Canada Only)


  • How should I handle a broken Compact Fluorescent Light bulb?

    They are generally considered to be safe to use; however, they do contain a small amount of mercury, and should be handled carefully when installing or removing them. Because of the mercury contained in fluorescents, Health Canada has issued guidelines to follow in order to minimize the exposure risk when a CFL bulb or tube is broken. This Guide will help to prevent serious injury when dealing with broken CFL light bulbs.

  • Where can I recycle old batteries?

    There are more than 1,200 collection sites in B.C.'s Call2Recycle program, which collect all household batteries and cell phones for recycling. There are also lots of retail stores where you can drop them off in person, including most London drugs stores, Home Depot and Ikea. Type in your postal code on Call2Recycle website to find the recycling depots closest to where you live or work.

  • Can I dispose of painted wood at a landfill site if lead paint is suspected?

    Landfill Site Operators are mandated to refuse waste that they suspect may be painted with lead based paint. The wood may need to be treated as a controlled waste and diverted away from the active face or perhaps treated as Hazardous Waste.

    A core sample may need to be taken of the wood (including paint) and that sample then tested for TCLP metals. A permit may be given if lab results show the lead level is below 5ppm; anything higher is considered to be a hazardous waste and is not acceptable at most BC Landfills.

    Landfills don't do the sampling or the testing of the wood but they do require the lab results. If the testing shows this as Hazardous Waste, a qualified Disposal Company in your area may be searched here.

  • Where can I dispose of hot tub and/or pool chemicals?

    Part containers of Pool and Hot Tub Chemicals are very easy to recycle into someone else's use. A free ad in a local newspaper or on a website such as Craigslist will help you identify someone who is sure to have a use for them.

  • How can I dispose of shotgun shells/bullets/ammunition?

    Local game and shooting clubs may be interested in receiving and/or disposing of ammunition. Failing that, the local detachment of the RCMP is always willing to accept this type of product.

  • How can I tell if there is Asbestos in my home or building?

    It can be difficult to tell whether your home has materials containing asbestos in it just by looking. As a general rule, if the Building or Home was built:

    Before the mid 1980s, it is highly likely that it would have materials containing asbestos.

    Between the mid 1980s and 1990, it is likely that it would have materials containing asbestos.

    After 1990, it is highly unlikely it would have materials containing asbestos.

    A list of experienced British Columbia asbestos removal companies. Search our member directory.

    Here is a a link to the Work Safe BC Asbestos information page.

  • How can I dispose of kitchen/deep fryer grease?

    Kitchen grease is considered a Business and/or Commercial Waste; improperly handled, it can clog sewer systems, pollute waterways and contaminate landfills. Consult your local phone pages for a company that specializes in recycling kitchen oil.

  • Grow Ops

    When the authorities are involved the decommissioning process is stringently monitored. Permits are taken, the air quality of the home assessed and all work inspected. All grow op related materials remaining behind must be disposed of legally. The next step is to assess the extent of the structural, electrical and environmental damage caused by the grow op. That means the affected area is gutted down to the bare floor and studs. All floor coverings, drywall, vapour barriers, and insulation are considered contaminated.


Downloadable Industry Fact Sheets

To contact us, please send an email to hazwaste@BCEIA.com

For media inquiries, please contact media@BCEIA.com