Greening Tribal Casinos
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In 2008, Grand Casino Hinckley joined EPA’s National Partnership for Environmental Priorities (NPEP) program and set a goal to recycle fluorescent lamps and other mercury-containing devices from the casino and other property operated by the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe. The NPEP program is a partnership program focused on reducing the use of potentially hazardous chemicals from products and processes. A commitment was also made by employees to recycle compact fluorescent lights (CFLs). The facility is next focusing on removing lead wheel weights from fleet vehicles. For more information, please visit EPA NPEP Success Story: Mille Lacs band of Ojibwe Tribe (PDF) (13 pp, 4.2MB, About PDF).
Does your casino generate hazardous waste? Most businesses do. All solids, liquids, or contained gaseous materials that are discarded should be evaluated before disposal to ensure that any hazardous wastes are handled and disposed in the appropriate manner. It is important to understand what requirements your business is subject to. EPA regulates how businesses handle their hazardous wastes based on the amount generated. For information on understanding what hazardous wastes you generate, hazardous waste typical of some businesses, and information on universal wastes see Managing Your Hazardous Waste: A Guide for Small Businesses (PDF) (31 pp, 996K, About PDF).
If your casino maintains slot machines in-house, it is likely that you will generate solvents and other commercial products in degreasing operations that might be regulated as hazardous waste. Caesars Tahoe switched to an alternative cleaner and was able to reduce and/or eliminate some of the hazardous wastes they generated in the maintenance of their casino gambling machines. For information on casino’s switch to alternative cleaners, see Nevada’s Small Business Development Center - Business Environmental Program (PDF) (2 pp, 33K, About PDF) .
Universal wastes are specific types of hazardous waste that a generator can manage in a different manner than with the more complex hazardous waste requirements. Universal wastes include batteries, agricultural pesticides, thermostats that contain liquid mercury, and fluorescent lamps. Large numbers of businesses generate universal wastes in relatively small quantities. Universal wastes contain mercury, lead, cadmium, copper and other substances hazardous to human health and the environment. The universal waste rules were developed to promote recycling and reduce the amount of these wastes being discarded in solid waste landfills. The Universal Waste rules streamline the environmental regulations for these wastes and reduce the regulatory burden for businesses that generate these wastes. Materials are continually added to the Universal Waste list; check EPA Universal Wastes page for the latest information.