Pollution Prevention Checklist for Carpentry and Wood Construction Departments
The Washington Department of Ecology encourages schools and laboratories to find safer alternatives to reduce, or even eliminate the use of toxic substances.
The table below lists common hazardous substances found in carpentry and wood
construction departments and preferred alternatives (in bold font), if available. Best management practices that can be used to reduce and prevent toxic wastes are also included.
Throughout all departments there are common issues with proper management of dangerous waste that is generated on site. The following bullets identify the most common issues and give best management practices (BMPs) for proper identification, accumulation, and disposal of dangerous wastes.
More resources are listed at the bottom of this page.
Download a printable checklist in Word, or pdf.
For more information contact your local
Ecology Regional Office.
|Items or Processes of Concern
and Best Management Practices
- Use low or no solvent adhesives if possible, such as hot melt, heat seal,
aqueous-based, or polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) adhesives.
- Evaluate your gluing operations to determine if too much is being mixed.
- Use coatings with the lowest volatile organic compounds and hazardous
air pollutants possible.
- Use coatings that do not have metal-based pigments.
- Use efficient spray equipment, such as high-volume low-pressure (HVLP),
airless, or air-assisted to reduce coating usage.
- Reuse paint mixing cups and use metal mixing sticks (be sure to clean
them before the paint dries).
- Consider investing in a weight scale to accurately measure paint recipes
in the smallest amounts necessary for the job.
- Use paint leftovers for equipment setup and spray pattern testing.
- Label and store leftover basecoats. Seal container tightly and store
upside-down to prevent air from entering.
- Apply stains and lacquer with sponge, brush, rag, or roller instead of
- Apply light color finishing materials first, followed by darker, when
- Use non-chlorinated solvents and thinners.
- Use methyl alcohol (methanol).
- Use a spray bottle or plunger can to deliver
solvents where they are needed.
- Segregate solvent wastes, distill, reuse, or dispose of as dangerous
- Use solvents until they lose their effectiveness, as opposed to when
they look dirty.
- Extend solvent life by filtering solids.
- Use two-part bleaches instead of chlorine bleach.
- Use non-chlorinated solvents.
- Implement dust collection system to reduce air emissions and increase
- Keep wood wastes clean and segregated by type to enhance recycling
- Use Environmentally preferable purchasing.
- Review Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDSs) for hazardous substance
- Properly store hazardous substances.
- Review curriculum for potential hazardous substance reductions.
|All generated waste streams
Unused and expired products
- Use chemical inventory and tracking software to centralize product
ordering, improve product tracking, storage requirement, waste management,
reduce disposal of expired product, and minimize duplicate orders to prevent
- Identify all potential waste streams and establish designation
procedures to determine if a hazardous waste or non-hazardous waste.
- Implement dangerous waste designation, collection, accumulation, and
disposal procedures for all waste streams.
- See Common Dangerous Waste Compliance Issues.
- Use rechargeable batteries.
- Use LED lamps when appropriate.
- Use low-mercury fluorescent lamps.
- Remove and/or replace mercury-containing equipment and manage as
- Implement a battery collection program and manage as
- Implement a whole-lamp recycling program and manage as
- If not recycled as Universal Waste collect, manage, and dispose of as