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EPA Announces An Estimated One Million Pounds of Household Hazardous Waste Collected

Release Date: 10/31/2005
Contact Information:


Contact: Eryn Witcher, 202-564-4355 / witcher.eryn@epa.gov.

(Washington, D.C.-Oct. 31, 2005) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today that an estimated one million pounds of household hazardous waste has been collected in Louisiana in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Household hazardous waste typically consists of cleaning products found in most homes as well as lawn and garden products, pesticides and herbicides, fuels and paints as well as batteries found in most garages.

"This collection milestone underscores our pledge to the people in the Gulf Coast region," said EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson. "EPA will continue its efforts to dispose of hazardous materials and protect public health."

Most of these ordinary household products are safe when stored and used under normal circumstances in the home, but can endanger the public when co-mingled. When disposed along with ordinary household garbage and then taken to a landfill for final disposal, these products can cause long term damage to the environment.

EPA has worked with local agencies and parishes to establish household hazardous waste collection centers in the following parishes in Louisiana: St. Tammany, Lafourche, Plaquemines, Orleans, St. Bernard, Vermillion, Cameron, and two collection centers in Jefferson Parish.

EPA and its contractors have distributed flyers announcing the collection system and then returning several days later to pick up all materials left in front of homes. After pickup and delivery to the various collection centers, the products are segregated into different waste streams for proper transportation and disposal.

These efforts will protect human health as well as prevent hazardous substances from contaminating soil and groundwater if not disposed of properly.

For more information, go to: http://www.epa.gov/epaoswer/non-hw/muncpl/debris.htm