hazardous waste

[ haz-er-duhs weyst ]
/ ˈhæz ər dəs ˈweɪst /


any industrial by-product or discarded commercial product that is potentially harmful to the environment or people and other living organisms because it is ignitable, corrosive, reactive, and/or toxic: You can’t throw these flammable old cans of paint thinner in with your regular trash—they need to be treated as hazardous waste.We are in compliance with all state regulations that pertain to the containment and disposal of hazardous wastes.



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Compare toxic waste.

Origin of hazardous waste

First recorded in 1945–50

Words nearby hazardous waste

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Scientific definitions for hazardous waste

hazardous waste
[ hăzər-dəs ]

A used or discarded material that can damage the environment and be harmful to health. Hazardous wastes include heavy metals and toxic chemicals used in industrial products and processes as well as infectious medical wastes and radioactive materials such as spent nuclear fuel rods.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.