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Hazardous Materials

Hazardous materials are a part of our everyday life in the form of batteries, light bulbs, and household chemicals such as pesticides, motor oil, cleaners, and paints. They are also used in many commercial and industrial operations. The use, storage, and disposal of hazardous materials—including management of contaminated soils and groundwater—are regulated by a myriad of Federal, State, and local laws. The City’s major industrial and office areas, such as the Bayfront and Rollins Road neighborhoods, pose a specific challenge due to the potential for hazardous materials associated with these activities. The City’s overall land use objective includes increasing the amount of live/work development in some of these areas, which places housing within areas that have a higher potential for hazardous materials. As such, the policies in this section specifically look at ways to minimize impacts to existing and future residential areas. The following goal and policies address the location, transport, storage, and disposal of hazardous materials.

Goal: CS-6

Protect residents, workers, and visitors from hazardous materials through improved regulations, disposal practices, location and site design requirements, and public information and education.

Require the proper storage and disposal of hazardous materials to prevent leakage, potential explosions, fire, or the release of harmful fumes. Coordinate with the Fire Department to identify and monitor pre-incident plans associated with hazardous materials storage and use. 

Development Review Agency Coordination

Maintain information channels to the residential and business communities about the illegal nature and danger of dumping hazardous material and waste into the storm drain system or in creeks.

Public Information and Education

Explore efficient, economical, and convenient ways to offer household hazardous waste collection for residents in partnership with the solid waste contractors and San Mateo County. 

Agency Coordination Public Information and Education

Assess future residents’ exposure to hazardous materials when new residential development or sensitive populations are proposed within the Live/Work land use designation. Do not allow residential development or sensitive populations if such hazardous conditions cannot be mitigated to an acceptable level of risk. 

Development Review

Continue to encourage residents and businesses to use non- and less-hazardous products, especially less toxic pest control products, to slow the generation of new hazardous waste requiring disposal through the county-wide program. 

Agency Coordination Public Information and Education