Hundreds dispose of hazardous waste

By JB Clark/NEMS Daily Journal

VERONA – Hundreds of people made the environment a little safer on Saturday, and cleaned out their storage sheds and cabinets.
Three Rivers Planning and Development District hosted an annual hazardous waste disposal day Saturday at the Lee County Agri-Center.
By 10 a.m., two hours into the event, workers estimated 300 people had dropped off items for recycling. In fact, cars were lined up through the parking lot and on to Highway 145.
“We usually expect about 600 people total,” said Casey Franks, project specialist at Three Rivers Planning and Development. “It’s been a pretty good turnout so far, we’ve got them lined up out in the street.”
The yearly event offers area residents the opportunity to dispose of items that shouldn’t wind up in a landfill.
“We’re taking things like household cleaning supplies, which you’re not really supposed to throw away and isn’t supposed to go into a landfill; paint, you can’t just throw paint away; pool chemicals; yard fertilizers; used motor oil; transmission fluid; gas and things like that,” Franks said.
Three Rivers used a grant from the Department of Environmental Quality to pay companies to properly dispose of and recycle items brought in.
“Thankfully, they keep giving us the grant each year,” Franks said. “We’ve done it every year since 1995, except for the year Katrina hit.”
Three Rivers offers the disposal in Lee County and in Lafayette County each year.
The hazardous waste disposal day in Oxford will be from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday at the National Guard Armory off Sisk Avenue.
Franks said The Environmental Quality Company will reuse any collected paint and take the rest to burn as alternative fuel. Anything left over will be incinerated.
The collected oil will be cleaned and reused. The metal and tires will be recycled. Electronic equipment will have the metal stripped from it and then plastic will then be crushed and recycled.
jb.clark@journalinc.com