On-line Decontamination of Analytical Wastes
The best way of greening the analytical methods is not to use reagents or solvents or, at least, to use innocuous substances in sample treatment and analyte measurements. However, many of the available methodologies involve the use of toxic compounds and as yet there are no alternative procedures. So, one of the tasks in greening the analysis is to incorporate corrective actions into the treatment steps after the measurements have been made, in order to move from analytical wastes to clean wastes. In this chapter, the various alternatives available in the scientific literature for recycling analytical wastes, degradation of toxic organic wastes (by thermal, chemical, photocatalytical or biodegradation methods) are reviewed, together with the evaluation of alternatives for trace toxic element passivation and removal. This chapter clearly demonstrates that there are always possibilities for greening the available methodologies and that the best solution for chemical pollution problems is to incorporate additional chemistry into the analytical methodologies. Additionally, it is clear that the online treatment of laboratory wastes can drastically reduce the cost of waste management, thus offering business opportunities.