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According to the Canadian laws, are solvent (specifically, ethyl acetate) contaminated rags that are liquid-free considered hazardous waste?
Yes, a solvent such as ethyl acetate is considered a hazardous waste under Canadian laws. Ethyl acetate is a combustible product and falls under the Canadian Workplace Hazardous Material Information System as Class B: Flammable and Combustible Material and under the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act as Class 3: Flammable Liquid. Solvent contaminated rags must be diverted from landfills for safe disposal for safety and environmental reasons.
In New Brunswick, the Fire Prevention and Inspection Regulation (NB.Reg.82-20) has requirements for the storage of combustible products, dangerous goods and flammable and combustible liquids. These requirements cover structure and design, housekeeping, storage, segregation, fire safety, spill control, labeling and training.
Depending on who is using the solvent, it is considered either an industrial hazardous waste or a household hazardous waste. When used in industrial practices, the company is responsible for identifying the product as a hazardous material and for its safe disposal. As a household hazardous waste, the citizen is responsible for bringing the hazardous material to his or her municipal Hazardous Waste Depot for safe disposal, free of charge.
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