The mountains and valleys of West Virginia. Photo taken from the observation tower at Pipestem State Park.
The Great Seal of West Virginia.
Ariel view of Meadowfill Landfill, Harrison County, WV. Earth Day at the State Capitol, 2006. Electronics collection/recycling at Home Depot, Teays Valley, WV. The Raleigh County SWA Recycling Center.

Solid Waste Management Board Administration


West Virginia's Latest Environmental Hazard

Methamphetamine Labs

What's Methamphetamine Made Of?

Manufacturing methamphetamine involves the mixing and discarding of a variety of toxic chemicals, including lye, acetone, muriatic acid, battery acid, white gas (lantern fuel), red phosphorous and crystal iodine.


The common availability of most of these substances belies the seriousness of their environmental and health hazards. The fumes themselves are toxic, flammable, or both, especially when confined and concentrated in a home or other small enclosed areas. Poured on the ground, the chemicals contaminate the soil and can migrate into groundwater. Indiscriminately discarding the chemicals in a landfill is illegal because they could cause the same problems many years in the future.


The following is a sampling of the various chemicals and other items that go into the process:

  • Acetone;

  • Aluminum foil;

  • Anhydrous Ammonia, Ammonium Nitrate or Isopropyl Alcohol;

  • Assorted glassware;

  • Benzene;

  • Black Iodine;

  • Brake cleaner;

  • Bronchodialators;

  • Camping fuel; (Coleman Fuel)

  • Coffee filters;

  • Coolers;

  • Drain cleaners;

  • Energy Boosters;

  • Ephedrine or Pseudoephedrine (cold or allergy tablets, empty blister packs);

  • Epsom Salts;

  • Ethyl Ether (starting fluid;)

  • Gasoline additives;

  • "Heet";

  • Hot Plates;

  • Hydrogen Peroxide;

  • Iodine;

  • Lithium metal (batteries);

  • Lye (Red Devil Lye);

  • Methyl Alcohol;

  • Muriatic Acid/Hydrocloric Acid

  • Matchbooks with the strike pad removed;

  • Paint thinner, mineral spirits and/or lighter fluid;

  • Phenylpropanolamine;

  • Plastic soda bottles;

  • Red Devil Lye or other drain openers;

  • Propane tanks;

  • Rock or table salt;

  • Starter fluid;

  • Sulfuric Acid/Battery Acid;

  • Toluene.

If you think of a methamphetamine lab as a room full of test tubes, beakers and white-coated technicians, think again.


If you suspect someone is operating a methamphetamine lab in your neighborhood, or have found a possible disposal site (methamphetamine leftovers are often found discarded beside the road in plastic trash bags) for methamphetamine lab leftovers, do not go near it - call the police. Once the lab is shut down or leftovers are found, the officer in charge should notify appropriate government agencies including the WV DEP at  (800) 642-3074

Meth Home


West Virginia Solid Waste Management Board
601 57th Street, SE
Charleston, WV  25304
Phone: 304-926-0448
Toll Free: 866-568-6649
Fax: 304-926-0472