HWTR Pollution Prevention

My Watershed

Universal Waste

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 universal wastes 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.

Universal Waste Toxic Metal Dangerous
Waste if Not Recycled
Preferred Alternatives and Best Management Practices
Old computers

Computer monitors

Portable or laptop computers including "tablet computers"

E-readers (also called e-book readers)

Cell phones

Spent batteries (alkaline, rechargeable, etc.) Lead X
  • Use rechargeable lithium batteries.
  • Use zinc air batteries.
  • Implement a battery collection program and recycle as Universal Waste.
Spent fluorescent lamps

Mercury-containing equipment
Mercury X



This page last updated August 2012