Hazardous waste is destroying the world
The World Health Organization estimates that 15% of the waste produced by hospitals, doctors offices and urgent care facilities is hazardous. This type of material can be infectious, radioactive or toxic to the surrounding environment and to those who come in contact with it.
Remember Flint Michigan.
That’s why health care companies must explicitly state their objectives for handling hazardous waste.
Blockchain to the rescue ?
Hospitals, government agencies and small local businesses must know their role in waste management. Decision makers in a business and organization are responsible for keeping everyone from janitors to nurses to doctors to patients to customers to waste handlers to the people in their community safe from dangerous and hazardous waste. The Organizational Solutions, standards and policies should be clear and everyone can make the right informed decisions about waste management.
Follow the Legal Regulations and Standards
Some laws are slow to catch up to best practices. Organizations must at least follow the bare minimum standard for waste management. They should follow all federal, state and local regulations. These regulations and laws can be complex and can vary between jurisdictions, so adhere to the various plans and ensure they meet standard compliance regulations.
Every state has their own policies and standards, so make sure to look for regulations from the proper state and local agencies that oversee health and the environment.
Some states focus more heavily on one side or the other, some jurisdictions split the duties evenly amongst different agencies. Whatever rules these agencies put forth, you should ensure your plan abides by them.
Good waste management strategy
Follow state and local waste management rules and regulations.
However a good waste management strategy must also follow regulations from the federal government. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration sets rules about how employers should keep employees safe from harm, including when they are handling waste. These rules keep workers safe when they are on the job. It keeps customers safe. It keeps communities safe. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also oversee medical waste and the regulations that must be in compliance with.
Policies and Laws that regulate toxic waste disposal are too numerous to list. They exist for the simple reason where If a person gets exposed to medical waste before it goes through decontamination, that person can become ill.
Sometimes dangerous toxic waste was used as part of a radiation treatment and is still radioactive. Other times the waste may be from bodily fluids from a person with a contagious disease. These illnesses can be as common as the flu or as deadly as Ebola.
Movies and shows like the walking dead or contagion or the many other alternatives love scaring people about these infectious diseases causing wide spread panic or an end of days zombie apocalypse. It’s good entertainment unless it was real life.
So imagine unprotected medical waste like needles and scalpels, things that would injure a person even when not toxic. And imagine that leaking or dumped and unprotected in a local steam or children’s playground. Or imagine a community drinking poisoned water like they did in Flint, Michigan.
Or think about some unprotected Needle from a place where it was used on a person with an infectious disease like HIV. That disease could transfer to another human. It will Cause panic in the streets. It’s not a zombie apocalypse, but it’s not good.
So if this hazardous waste can be harmful to human health, it’s vital that one of the main goals of waste management is minimizing these potential risks.
Waste management process
The process starts with disposing of waste in separate and safe receptacles. We’ve all seen hazardous plastic boxes in a hospital. But what happens to them ? Where do they go after it’s filled ? Big dumpster out back ? The entire process from that point should keep human health in mind until the waste is deemed safe and put in with the general trash.
How can blockchain help ?
Hazardous toxic waste with RFids and blockchain would be a Great use case. Add the automatous cars in the future and robotic process automation and robotic assembly line smart contracts and intelligent image recognition and suddenly you have an automated hazardous material identification tracking system from hospitals to waste treatment facilities to end of life storage areas.
Why does it matter ?
An improperly handled medical waste item or items can spread disease and cause outbreaks, or infect drinking water. Or poison farming soil. The CDC has guidelines for proper disposal as do other European and other organizations around the globe.
Blockchain and AI and IOT only work when the platform and system and image recognition models follow CDC guidelines and regulations whether you legally have to or not. Following Best practices is always a good strategy when it comes to intelligent waste management.
So toxic waste can hurt or even kill people, and blockchain can help improve waste management audit trails. But hazardous waste can also cause serious irreparable damage to the environment.
Imagine radioactive medical waste leaking to a local water table source, and thus flowing downstream into a river and lake and even ocean. The entire safe drinking water and soil for agriculture can ruin an entire lifecycle ecosystem. We know the oceans and plastic problem.
I grew up In a place where hospitals dumped their waste into big pipes that drained into the bays, rivers and oceans. And then traveled down the coast to local popular beaches. Kids running on the beach finding old dirty needles and hospital waste wasn’t a pretty sight. Nor was it safe. And I was a kid that found this trash. Other kids I knew stepped on these dirty needles and waste. Nasty and dangerous.
How will blockchain fix this ?
To keep such disasters and tragedies from happening, organizations need to follow best practices for environmental safety standards and policies. The goal of a smart contract AI enabled IoT blockchain system is to have an immutable redundant traceable and transparent automated rules engine, as well as a better logistical flow for medical waste management.
Being environmentally responsible also helps organizations meet other major goals and ideals. The safety of the environment and community directly affects people’s health. It changes DNA and the future for our children and grandchildren.
So What’s the difference between hazardous waste and solid waste ? Or is it the same thing ?
The terms “hazardous waste” and “solid waste” might seem relatively simple and even obvious, though the legal definitions set down by the Environmental Protection Agency are complex.
The EPA classifies all hazardous waste as solid waste; however, not all solid waste is hazardous. Proper waste handling is important to many small businesses, including food service, manufacturing and car repair.
Solid waste consists of garbage, refuse or abandoned materials, while hazardous waste is solid waste that can cause harmful effects to human life or the environment.
Some businesses have little to worry about when it comes to hazardous waste. A computer programmer or web developer might throw a bunch of SOWs or functional or technical requirements into their cubicle trash can. They probably throw other non important papers and forms and reports too. This solid waste that is not hazardous at all. It’s simply trash. Or recyclable waste. They may need more privacy and company secret polices in place for tang though.
Other businesses or individuals may need to be careful how they handle waste because of potential harm to people or nature. Jiffy lube(car oil change company in the US) must securely store used oil and other chemicals and hire a
licensed waste management company to haul it away.
Blockchain blockchain and AI and IOT. And Pagarba.
An environmental management system addresses the environmental impact of an organization’s activities and establishes goals and procedures that will improve the impact it has on the environment and human health.
Establishing some form of environmental management system ensures that organizations maintain compliance with federal environmental regulations.
These may include the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act and the Toxic Substances Control Act.
Blockchain for better and safer Public Health
Now imagine a blockchain and AI powered environmental management system that has built in smart contracts that automates and enables the protection of public health and safety by creating these smart contract rules and procedures to limit or eliminate harmful substances from entering the environment, including public water systems.
Every organization in some way affects the environment, which directly affects public health.
A blockchain and AI powered environmental management system is an ever changing scalable, immutable, Traceable, transparency enabled and image recognition automated platform that adheres to federal, state and local environmental policies and it follows a agile continuous development continuous integration process workflow that seeks to continually lessen negative impacts on the environment and communities.
A more sustainable future earth.
Blockchain and AI.