Hazardous waste collection is Saturday, Aug. 20

August 12, 2016

HHW Collection#MasonCountyNews #MasonCountyEnvironment #Scottville

SCOTTVILLE — The Mason-Manistee-Ocean Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day (HHW)  is scheduled for Saturday, August 20, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at three different collection locations in Mason, Manistee and Oceana counties.

Locations include:

  • Mason County Road Commission, 510 E. State Street, Scottville
  • Manistee County Road Commission, 8946 Chippewa Hwy. (US 31), Bear Lake
  • Hart Department of Public Works, 1010 S State St, Hart

Pesticides, oils, glues, solvents, batteries, electronics and pharmaceuticals are the most common items accepted at this collection day. If planning to bring greater than 200 pounds of a hazardous waste, please notify your local conservation district ahead of time.

Persons bringing their unused or unwanted pharmaceuticals to the Household Hazardous Waste collection day are reminded to not mix or combine their pills. Please leave the medications in their original containers. Medications that are mixed have to be separated and counted by the on-site pharmacists, which is very difficult and time consuming. Parts of the label containing personal information can be removed or made unreadable with a pen if desired. Schedule drugs can also be safely disposed of at the collection, no questions asked.

Items that are not accepted include residential tires, Styrofoam, and latex paint, among others. To properly dispose of latex paint, the HHW committee advises to open the paint can and leave it outside to dry out on a sunny day, then throw it away with the rest of your solid waste. Appliances containing Freon like refrigerators, freezers, dehumidifiers and window-mounted air conditioners will not be accepted (these can be taken to Padnos Pere Marquette Recycling Center in Amber Township, Mason County: 231 843-4455).

The Collection Day was inspired in 2006 by the State of Michigan’s Agricultural Clean Sweep program enacted over the previous five years. Clean sweep was established to keep unwanted or expired pesticides, fertilizers and farm motor vehicle fluids from potentially entering our rivers, lakes and groundwater. Steering committee members realized that some of these same chemicals are also being utilized by non-agricultural residents and property owners, so they pursued local funding to get a residential program going, too.

The local HHW program had its first drop-off event in August 2007, after being supported through a grant from Dow Chemical Co. and funding from Mason, Oceana and Manistee counties. Local townships, villages and cities within the three counties helped the HHW Committee meet a fundraising goal of $30,000 for the first year. These local government entities, along with the Pere Marquette Watershed Council, Hamlin Lake Preservation Society and OxyChem Community and Charitable Donations program have continued this generous support over the past 9 years to bring yet another cleanup event to Mason, Manistee and Oceana counties this August.

Since the first year, over 260,000 pounds of hazardous materials have been collected from residents and landowner’s garages, barns, basements, storage units and sheds. An electronics and appliance clean-up was added in 2013.  The committee expects to reach 300,000 pounds with the addition of household items collected in 2016.

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