Precious Metals Waste: Former Manufacturing Facility

An industrial property developer retained GeoInsight to assess the characteristics of wastes recovered from a building formerly occupied by a precious metal products manufacturer. The drummed wastes had been recovered from a below ground sump that had been used for unknown purposes.  Initial assessments suggested that the wastes might be considered hazardous and infectious. However, the wastes were also suspected to potentially contain gold, silver, platinum, and palladium. GeoInsight collected a representative composite sample from the 22 drums of waste and recorded the visible characteristics of each of the waste in each drum.


GeoInsight had the samples analyzed and the results established that the waste was not infectious, not regulated by the Toxic Substances Control Act, that the value of precious metals in the wastes exceeded $100,000, and therefore the wastes could be classified as a Regulated Recyclable Material.  The costs and benefits of various options for dewatering the sludge and handling the associated effluent were evaluated and GeoInsight identified various refiners who could recover the precious metals. GeoInsight’s findings and recommendations were presented to the client who was then able to have the wastes handled as a positive asset, rather than a liability.

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Relevant Tags

  • Manufacturing
  • Waste Management
  • Remediation