PROVIDENCE - The Department of Environmental Management's Division of Agriculture will be hosting three obsolete pesticide collection events in September. The program, called the Obsolete Pesticide Collection Program (OPCP) provides farmers and other commercial entities with a no cost alternative to dispose of obsolete pesticides. Among the products eligible for the take-back are those that are no longer able to be used for their intended purposes because they may have become caked, frozen or dried out, along with unregistered and banned pesticides.
The goal of the initiative, which is funded by the US Environmental Protection Agency, is to collect obsolete, unusable pesticides and properly dispose of them in order to avoid any potential contamination that could result from these hazardous materials. It is not uncommon for these materials to accumulate when once-registered products become unregistered or banned; uses and target pests are removed from labels; and when the pesticides simply outlive their shelf life. There is no cost to the holders of the pesticides who bring them in for disposal.
The three collection events, which are open to all commercial and private applicators, including farmers, have been scheduled for Tuesday, September 16 at the RIDOT Garage located at 439 Tower Hill Road in North Kingstown; Wednesday, September 17 at the RIDOT Garage located at 122 Wyatt Road in Middletown; and Thursday, September 18 at the RIDOT Garage located at 4782 Post Road in Charlestown. Materials will be accepted from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at each of the events, and participants are asked to arrive at least 30 minutes prior to closing. Once onsite, the materials will be collected by Triumvirate Environmental. They will be sorted, packed, and transported for disposal.
This is the third round of pesticide collection events sponsored by the Division of Agriculture. At the round held this spring, 53 55-gallon drums and 19 wranglers (size of a washing machine box) filled with obsolete pesticides, along with two pressurized cylinders of obsolete pesticides, were collected for proper disposal.
DEM offers the following packaging and transportation guidelines for those bringing outdated pesticide products to the collection events:
? Pesticides should not be transported in the passenger area of a vehicle; instead, place them in the trunk or truck bed. However, if you must transport pesticides in a station wagon or van, secure them in the back, away from passengers and pets and open the side windows. ? Do not place pesticides with groceries or other household items. ? Never leave pesticides unattended in an unlocked trunk or open truck bed where they may come in contact with children or others. ? Make sure pesticide container lids are securely fastened. Secure containers in an upright position to ensure they cannot fall or be knocked over. Wrap glass containers in paper to protect from breaking. It is nearly impossible to thoroughly clean pesticides from upholstery, so take extra precautions to ensure spills do not occur in a vehicle. ? Dry materials must be wrapped in plastic bags and placed in cardboard cartons or plastic buckets. Liquids must be put into plastic containers with newspaper. ? Be sure to attach labels to containers. Materials in containers larger than five gallons will not be accepted at the collection site.
Additional information about the program is available online at http://www.dem.ri.gov/programs/bnatres/agricult/pesticidecollection.php. For questions, call Howard Cook in DEM's Division of Agriculture at 222-2781, Ext. 4504 or contact him via email at: email@example.com.