Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off This Saturday
Imagine swimming in a thick pool of household cleaners and fertilizers. It would be an awful experience, if not a deadly one. Yet, every time this stuff winds up down the sink, toilet, drain, or gutter, it is very well on its way to the nearest body of water… say, Pinal Creek or the Salt River Basin.
So, instead of dumping your Clorox Bleach and Lysol down the drain, bring them to the Household Hazardous Waste Collection event this Saturday between 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Check out the flyer for the location address, and see the full list of acceptable and not acceptable items at the bottom of this page.
You might be thinking: why not just toss this stuff in the trash? Out of sight, out of mind. It goes to a landfill where it’s sealed up and won’t cause trouble, right?
Actually, most landfills aren’t made to contain hazardous waste. That means at some point, this waste could leak into water sources nearby, emit dangerous fumes in the air, or cause a fire or explosion. And, it’s not uncommon for sanitation workers to suffer from burns, lost eyesight, or lung damage while handling hazardous wastes.
So, why not dump it into the storm drain or gutter? Because sewers drain directly into the nearest body of water. It’s no better when hazardous waste goes down the faucet or toilet. Even though it enters septic or municipal sewer systems, things like paints or bleaches can actually pass through these systems without breaking down. Then, they either get dumped from the sewage plant into a nearby body of water (Globe’s wastewater treatment facility dumps into Pinal Creek), or, if passing through septic, end up in the ground, where they can contaminate groundwater.
Of course, if you simply dump this stuff on the ground, not only could it leach into the soil and contaminate any nearby water, it becomes an obvious danger to children and animals.
According to the EPA, we produce an average of 530,000 tons of household hazardous waste per year in the U.S. – that’s more than one billion pounds! The least we can do is dispose of it safely.
Items That Will Be Accepted:
- Gasoline, Kerosine, Diesel
- Paint Thinners, Solvents
- Household Cleaners
- Pesticides, Fertilizers
- Pool Chemicals
- Light Bulbs
- Electronics (Computers, Monitors, TVs)
- Cylinders under 25 lbs.
- Non DEA pharmaceuticals
Items That Will NOT Be Accepted:
- Bio Hazardous Waste or Needles
- PCB Containing Items
- Explosives (ammunition, etc)
- Cylinders Over 25 lbs.
- Business or Industrial Waste
Jenn Walker began writing for Globe Miami Times in 2012 and has been a contributor ever since. Her work has also appeared in Submerge Magazine, Sacramento Press, Sacramento News & Review and California Health Report. She currently teaches Honors English at High Desert Middle School and mentors Globe School District’s robotics team.