Knowledge Base

Mercury is a naturally occurring element that has often been used in laboratories, instruments, industrial and commercial equipment, and household items. Mercury can be released into the atmosphere by power plants through the combustion of coal. Mercury is toxic in all chemical forms. Once mercury is released into the environment, it can be transformed into methyl mercury, which allows it to bioaccumulate in the body.

Health Issues

Topic: Radiation Safety, Environmental Affairs

The Ohio State University is committed to the protection of human health and the environment. As such, the University strongly encourages faculty, staff, and students to utilize the various chemical minimization methods to reduce the quantity and toxicity of chemical wastes generated on campus. An important benefit of waste minimization is that it should reduce the ever increasing disposal costs, especially with the current and anticipated changes to state and federal regulations.

Topic: Environmental Affairs

  • Avoid chlorinated organic solvents, cyanide compounds, and petroleum-based compounds when water-based substitutes exist.
  • Buy drainboards and drip pans to enhance drip reuse in process baths.
  • Choose closed-loop (i.e., fully enclosed) recycling designs to reduce wastes and worker exposures.

Topic: Environmental Affairs

What is a hazardous waste?

The first step in any pollution prevention plan is to understand what is a hazardous waste. Once you know what constitutes a hazardous waste, then you are able to evaluate your processes to determine whether you are a generator of hazardous waste. At this point you can put into practice your strategies for reducing your waste generation.

Topic: Environmental Affairs