NIH Waste Management Program

The Waste Management Program provides comprehensive recycling services plus chemical, medical, and solid waste services to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Key goals of the Waste Management Program are to: maximize the amounts of our wastes that are recycled, recovered, or beneficially reused; reduce the amounts of toxic chemicals purchased and used at the NIH; provide prompt and effective service in support of the NIH research mission; comply with all applicable waste regulations; and avoiding unnecessary chemical wastes through smaller quantity orders. The efforts NIH has undergone in this endeavor are illustrated in the NIH Waste Disposal Guide.
The Waste Management Program achieves its goals by providing various waste services to the NIH through the following programs:
  • The solid waste service provides loading dock collection dumpsters and hauling services to efficiently remove and dispose of all general solid waste. In addition, a comprehensive recycling program is provided on the main campus that includes the collecting, processing, and shipping of recyclable materials to off-site facilities that process the materials into reusable raw materials for consumer products. The goal for our recycling program is to recycle all of our general solid waste possible.  This program requires extensive promotion and outreach to encourage all NIH staff and operations to fully participate in the recycling efforts.
  • The chemical waste services (CWS) program collects, processes, treats and disposes of all chemical wastes generated by the NIH. This program emphasizes the elimination or reduction of the amounts and toxicity of wastes at their source through process improvements or toxic chemical replacements, wherever possible, and proper management of all unavoidable wastes including their characterization, collection, labeling, packaging, storage, recycling, transportation, treatment and final disposal.
  • Medical waste services collect all medical pathological wastes from buildings which are subsequently shipped for off-site thermal treatment in accordance with all applicable regulations. Goals for this program include minimization of medical waste through better segregation and development of effective on-site medical waste treatment systems. 

Information on the NIH's waste management goals as related to its Sustainability Implementation Plan can be found on the Pollution Prevention and Waste Elimination goal page.

Programs in place to manage WASTE:
Related References and Links: