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How to Minimize Hazardous Waste

Being a smart shopper is also a sure way to minimize hazardous waste at home or work. The following guidelines can help you shop:

  • Buy one product that will accomplish many tasks, instead of a separate cleaner for every chore. This reduces the cleaning budget, the need for storage, and the amount of leftover products in your home.
  • Generally, water-based products are safer for the environment than petroleum-based items, such as water-based paints and degreasers.
  • Choose environmentally friendly aerosol sprays. Avoid sprays containing harmful chemicals. Avoid pressurized aerosols that may be flammable. Choose pump sprays instead.
  • Buy only as much as you need and will be able to use in a reasonable amount of time. This reduces storage space and the potential for spills or fires.
  • Choose the least hazardous products available. Do this by reading labels, looking for warning words, and checking the ingredients. For instance, products labeled:
    • "Caution" are less hazardous than those labeled
    • "Warning," which are less hazardous that those labeled
    • "Danger"

    Choosing products labeled "Danger" only as a last resort enables you to select the least hazardous product.

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