Waste Oil Management

The Problem

Waste Oil Management in the Caribbean

Waste oils are one of the greatest sources of pollution globally, and this waste stream continues to remain the largest contributor, by volume, to hazardous waste generated in countries such as Trinidad and Tobago.

Waste or used oil has been defined under the Basel Convention as:

any semi-solid or liquid used product consisting totally or partially of mineral oil or synthesised hydrocarbons (synthetic oils), oily residues from tanks, oil-water mixtures and emulsions arising from industrial and non-industrial sources where they have been used for lubricating, hydraulic, heat transfer, electrical insulating (dielectric) or other purposes and whose original characteristics have changed during use thereby rendering them unsuitable for further use for the purpose for which they were originally intended.

These oils arise from lubricating oils used in vehicles, hydraulic oils, oil production and refinery operations, heat transfer fluids, maritime and port operations, and cutting oils/metal working fluids.

Unfortunately, in the Caribbean, waste oil is often indiscriminately disposed of in waterways and landfills, adding greatly to the issue of oil pollution throughout the region. In the natural environment, used oil poses threats to human health and the environment.

Waste Oil Projects in the Caribbean