Which Household Products Are Hazardous?
Read the Label
If you see DANGER, POISON, CAUTION or WARNING on the label, the product is hazardous.
Why is this important?
They are harmful
- Some household products can harm the environment.
- The Lake County landfill is unlined, with no protective barrier between trash, groundwater and soil underneath. This leaves an open conduit to our water systems. Common items like bleach, paints and stains can harm local ecosystems if allowed to accumulate in soil and water.
- Pesticides, including weed and feed, moss killers, insect sprays and slug bait can harm other plants, animals and insects. These products can also be carried by rainwater to local water bodies where they can harm wildlife. See ecotoxicology and general information on the spread of pesticides beyond their intended use.
- Medicines can enter the environment, getting into our waterways – and even at low levels can harm aquatic life, showing up in fish. A recent USGS meta-study, the first of its kind, found low-levels of pharmaceuticals in the majority of streams surveyed. Historically, people were told to flush medication down the rain, where it ultimately accumulates int eh environment. Now communities have take-back programs to protect their watersheds. We are working on one in Lake County.
- Products containing mercury that are improperly thrown away can have long-term negative effects on our environment. There are numerous studies of the harmful effects of mercury in our waterways and in the fish and animals that inhabit them.
Most can’t go in the trash
- You can take them to the Lake County Household Hazardous Waste Round Up on May 17th, 2014.
What’s not on a household product label?
- A list of all the ingredients in the product.
- An explanation of words such as “natural” and “green.” They have no legal meaning.
- What is in fragrances. Studies find that scents may be made up of many hazardous chemicals.
- Read the manufacturer’s Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) which must list health effects, first aid, storage and more.
- Manufacturers do not have to list ingredients if they are trade secrets.
- Consumer Product Safety Commission: A product is hazardous if it can cause substantial personal injury during ordinary use.
- Environmental Protection Agency: Many household hazardous products add to indoor air pollution which is harmful to human and pet health.
- Common Household Chemicals: Dangerous Mixtures.
Questions? Call us (719) 465-6164, or email firstname.lastname@example.org