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Radioactive Waste

Last updated: January 31, 2017

What Does Radioactive Waste Mean?

Radioactive waste contains radioactive material that may pose a threat to human health and the environment. Nuclear technology and fission, as well as certain medical processes give rise to radioactive waste products. The disposal of such waste is highly regulated and controlled, and must be held in isolation and be safely confined until the radioactivity no longer poses a hazard.

Safeopedia Explains Radioactive Waste

OSHA regulations primarily cover exposure to radiation during equipment use and workplace processes, for example, the use of x-ray machines and electron microspores. In terms of radioactive waste, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has the widest jurisdiction over waste products, such as spent nuclear fuel and waste generated during its reprocessing, uranium mill tailings and low level waste like disposable protective clothing. Specific regulations apply to the handling, shipping and disposal of various types of nuclear waste, and any company involved in the generation or disposal of nuclear waste will be required to comply with the relevant regulations and standards.


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