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Florida

State Universal Waste Resources

What You Need to Know

In Florida the Department of Environmental Protection enforces the hazardous waste regulations, including the universal waste rule. If you have any questions, contact someone at Department of Waste Management.

Florida's Universal Waste Rule covers the following wastes: batteries (e.g., certain lead-acid batteries not recycled under other regulations; button silver-oxide and zinc-air; and 9-volt, C, AA, coin, and button rechargeable lithium); pesticides; mercury containing devices (e.g., thermostats, switches); and electric lamps (e.g., fluorescent, high intensity discharge, sodium vapor, and mercury vapor). Certain other battery types (e.g. alkaline and carbon zinc cells that have been manufactured without mercury) may not be classified as hazardous wastes, and would therefore not fall under the Universal Waste Rule. However, as a matter of responsible practice, such batteries should be collected and sent to recycling facilities, rather than being landfilled.

Read the above regulations, talk to someone at the Department of Waste Management and use the other resources found below to learn more about these rules. Here’s what to look for and ask about:

  • Do I need to register as a universal waste handler?
  • What waste accumulation and storage requirements apply?
  • Do I need to label universal waste storage containers?
  • Where can I dispose of universal waste?
  • What waste transportation and disposal requirements apply?
  • Are there any employee training requirements?
  • Are there any tracking, reporting and recordkeeping requirements?

Other tools, fact sheets, and resources:

  • The Management of Spent Mercury-Containng Lamps and Devices Destined For Recycling. - - Florida has adopted by reference the federal regulations pertaining to the management of universal wastes found at 40 CFR 273 "revised as of July 1, 2003." Therefore, although the 1999 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations for fluorescent lamps are in effect in Florida, the EPA regulations for mercury-containing equipment that were added in August 2005 are not, as they did not exist at the time of the July 1, 2003, CFR edition. However, the state has added its own provisions for the regulation of mercury-containing lamps and mercury-containing devices destined for recycling, and therefore, the Florida rules for lamps and mercury-containing devices differ from the federal rules for lamps and mercury-containing equipment.
  • Environmental Issues with Mercurry - - An explanation of rules relating to spent mercury-containing lamps and devices.
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