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Chemical Neutralization and Disposal Chart

Hello Ganoksin,

Proper disposal of chemicals is a problem Ive seen for many years in
our industry; brought up through many forums and no one has really
solid neutralization and disposal methods.

I have been working closely with a chemist to find proper methods of
disposal. Basically, even the harshest chemicals after neutralization
become salt and water.

In order to figure out what neutralizations are needed, I first need
to know what chemicals are broadly used in this industry. Please take
a look at the chemicals below and email this list orme directly any
additions that should be present.

Hopefully, with a well developed chart, this problem can be solved
and we can take a bite out of needless and lazy environment

Hydrochloric Acid
Nickel Sulfate
Boric Acid
Nickel Chloride
Sodium Saccharin
Inorganic Electrolyte Solution
Rhodium Sulfate
Sulfuric Acid
Sodium Acid sulfate
Rhodium sulfate
Sulfuric acid
Copper, Acid salt of
Molybdenum trioxide
Boric acid
Copper powder
Propelyne clycol
Alumina, non fibrous
Silica Amorphous

These chemicals were found in (in order; spaces indicate several
chemicals from the product):

Insta-Clean 16 oz.
Midas Bright Nickel Solution

Clean Earth Strip-Free 32 oz.
Midas Rhodium Pen Plating Solution

Rio Pickle; Sodium acid sulfate; Nitre cake; Sodium hydrogen

Rhodium Plating Solution, Midas

Midas Green Patina Solution

Boric Acid, aka orthoboric acid, aka boracic acid
Borax, aka sodium tetraborate, aka
Liquid Copper, aka Midas liquid copper

Red Rouge polishing compound

Finish seal laquer
White Rouge polishing compound

Warm regards,
Kennon Young
Vermont Gemological Laboratory


I think it is great that you are taking on this project. As I am
fairly new to the jewelry field I don’t have a lot of knowledge about
the wide variety of chemicals used in the industry. But I have been
an environmentalist for a long time and would love to have a chart
available on how to neutralize all these chemicals. Be sure to
publicize it far and wide!

Lynn White


I applaud your project and the effort it will require, including
promoting and distributing the results.

Certainly there are instances of metalworkers (and others) being
seriously injured, or even dead, as the result of toxic exposures.
There are numerous lessons from early industrial England, such as
miners with silicosis and asbestosis, watchmakers and felt workers
with mercury poisoning (“mad as a hatter” was not a light-hearted
term), etc. And there are many instances of nasty things persisting
in the environment.

However, in my view, the most pervasive effect nowadays is the
hysterical fear of “toxic, poisonous, mutagenic”, etc. chemicals. In
actual fact almost everything is “toxic” to some degree; too much
oxygen causes retinitis of prematurity, too much water and you
drown, too much salt and you become hypertensive, a little cyanide
and you’re dead. But everything is chemicals, atoms combine to form
molecules and various molecules react with one another. When they do
the old molecules are gone and the atoms reform into other molecules.

You are absolutely right, even the most nasty molecules can usually
be “neutralized” to become salt and water, not necessarily table
salt, but some salt. If the salt formed is very stable it stops
reacting with things and the nasty molecule is gone. It’s also very
important to realize that many “dangerous chemicals” are quickly
neutralized by exposure to the wide, wide world. Actually many of the
most reactive molecules are the most likely to react with something
quickly and form very stable salts.

As a part of your project you mighty also find out just what the
"decontamination authorities" do with “toxic wastes”, what they end
up with and what they do with that!

Keep at it, Kennon.
Dr. Mac