Clean Harbors Debuts One Container Pharmaceutical Waste Disposal Program

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Single container system is easier for clinical staff – eliminates segregation, reduces RCRA hazardous waste disposal errors.

Clean Harbors, North America’s leading provider of environmental, energy and industrial services, today announced a One Container Program for pharmaceutical waste disposal at hospitals, clinics and other healthcare facilities.

Under the Clean Harbors One Container Program frontline clinicians are able to dispose of both hazardous and non-hazardous pharmaceutical wastes in a single container.* This substantially reduces non-compliance with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) waste disposal rules that results from waste segregation disposal systems.

Under typical waste segregation collection systems frontline personnel must separate hazardous pharmaceutical wastes from non-hazardous wastes. This requires extensive training and distributes compliance responsibilities to a broad staff segment increasing the organization’s liability. The risk is potential non-compliance with RCRA rules that can result in fines of up to $37,500 per day per incident.

“Our research shows that between five and 40 percent of hazardous pharmaceutical waste is misclassified as non-hazardous,” said John Kelsey, Clean Harbors Vice President, Pharmaceutical, Biotech and Healthcare. “That means that a state or federal inspection on any given day at virtually any healthcare facility in the country will reveal misclassified hazardous wastes that could result in regulatory action. Clean Harbors’ One Container Program relieves staff of the responsibility and helps ensure that all waste is handled in compliance with the highest standards.”

Cost Competitive – Cost Neutral

The Clean Harbors One Container Program, which has been implemented at many leading healthcare organizations across the country, collects and disposes of all of the wastes in accordance with RCRA regulations covering hazardous wastes. In addition to the reduction in liability, the Clean Harbors One Container Program “blended” disposal cost is cost competitive and often cost neutral because Clean Harbors, as the largest hazardous waste incineration company in North America, owns and operates every step of the hazardous waste disposal process.

“Clean Harbors offers not just a One Container Program, we offer a One Contractor Disposal System that is unmatched in the industry. We are in the business of handling and disposing of hazardous wastes and since many non-hazardous pharmaceutical wastes exhibit the same toxic characteristics as hazardous waste the One Container Program further protects the environment,” said Kelsey.

Complete Control - Highest Standards

The Clean Harbors One Container Program is a comprehensive collection system that is customized for each organization. Clean Harbors staff work with healthcare administrators to design waste management systems that use the single containers at each collection location. They also develop schedules and procedures for the collection, transportation, management, documentation and destruction of the combined waste.

The One Container Program meets all federal and individual state mandates for pharmaceutical waste management. Clean Harbors offers the added benefit of complete control of the pharmaceutical waste through destruction at one of its RCRA-certified Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) hazardous waste incinerators ensuring the safe, documented, environmentally sound destruction of materials.

Visit, email healthcareservices(at)cleanharbors(dot)com or call 888.304.7035 for more information on the Clean Harbors One Container Program.

About Clean Harbors
Clean Harbors is the leading provider of environmental, energy and industrial services throughout North America. The Company serves over 60,000 customers, including a majority of the Fortune 500 companies, thousands of smaller private entities and numerous federal, state, provincial and local governmental agencies. Headquartered in Norwell, Massachusetts, Clean Harbors has more than 200 locations, including over 50 waste management facilities, throughout North America in 37 U.S. states, seven Canadian provinces, Mexico and Puerto Rico. For more information, visit

*Except for a few waste items that must be collected separately due to Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations.


David N. Proud
Vice President, Marketing
Clean Harbors

Sandy McLaughlin
Soucy Communications Group

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Greg Soucy
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