Canadian Water and Wastewater Association eBulletin

Alberta: Province issues Cannabis Waste Management fact sheet

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The fact sheet provides proper management and disposal procedures for cannabis waste at cannabis cultivation facilities, testing facilities, product manufacturing facilities etc. Access Fact Sheet at:

In regards to liquid cannabis waste the fact sheet  recommends that generators of liquid cannabis waste concentrate or extract properly classify and characterize the waste to determine if it is hazardous or nonhazardous. Hazardous waste is subject to the applicable hazardous waste management requirements outlined in the Waste Control Regulation (AR 192/1996) and the Alberta User Guide for Waste Managers. 
Cannabis wastes that must be characterized and classified include, but are not limited to: 

  • Wastes from cannabis flowers, trim and solid plant material used to create a cannabis extract;
  • Flammable solvents or chemicals used in the production of retail cannabis concentrate or extract; and
  • Discarded cannabis plant waste, spent solvents and laboratory wastes from any cannabis processing or laboratory testing. 

Liquid cannabis waste concentrate or extract classified and characterized as hazardous waste can be disposed of in a deepwell or sent to a hazardous waste treatment facility. Non-hazardous liquid cannabis waste may be either sent to a local wastewater treatment plant for treatment or disposed of via deepwell.

The legalization of marijuana has certainly raised questions about wastewater treatment systems capability to remove metaboloites, and byproducts of mass growing operations. and the potential for accumulation in the aquatic environment.