Free Disposal of Banned, Unusable Pesticides Available to Maine Residents

August 24, 2016

For more information contact: Megan Patterson at 207-287-8804

AUGUSTA—This October, the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry’s (DACF) Board of Pesticides Control (BPC) and the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will help Mainers dispose of banned or unusable pesticides. The Maine Obsolete Pesticides Collection Program is a free annual program for homeowners, family-owned farms and greenhouses. The program has collected almost 100 tons of pesticides since its inception.

Collections will occur at sites in Presque Isle, Bangor, Augusta and Portland. Participants must register by September 23, 2016.

Governor Paul R. LePage is urging Mainers to take advantage of this opportunity to protect the environment and save money by participating in this annual collection event. “This is an efficient, effective way to protect the environment and assist Mainers with the proper disposal of unusable pesticides at no expense to them. By combining the in-house resources of two state agencies, disposal costs are reduced to about $2 per pound, helping to minimize the cost to Maine taxpayers.”

“Homeowners and farmers inadvertently store banned pesticides or pesticides that have become unusable,” said Whitcomb. “They can be found in basements, garages, barns, and recently purchased homes. The Maine Obsolete Pesticides Collection Program helps prevent unwanted pesticides from being thrown in the trash or poured down the drain, potentially contaminating the land or drinking water.”

“Proper disposal of pesticides gives everyone the opportunity to make a positive impact on our environment and public health at no cost to Maine residents,” said Maine DEP Commissioner Paul Mercer. “The collection events are held at several locations across the State, and registering is free and easy.”

The collected chemicals go to out-of-state disposal facilities licensed by the federal Environmental Protection Agency where they are incinerated or reprocessed.

Registration by September 23, 2016, is mandatory—drop-ins are not permitted. To register, get details, and learn important information about the temporary storage and transportation of obsolete pesticides, go to the BPC Web site at http://www.thinkfirstspraylast.org , or call 207-287-2731.

The Maine Obsolete Pesticides Collection Program, jointly sponsored by the BPC and DEP, and paid for entirely through pesticide product registration fees, has kept more than 97 tons of pesticides out of the waste stream since its start in 1982.

For more information on the Maine Board of Pesticides Control, go to: http://www.thinkfirstspraylast.org

For more information on the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, go to: http://www.maine.gov/dep

Important Note to the Media: Since registration is required, please post any information from this release as soon as possible. This will allow adequate time for participants and the Board of Pesticides Control to process applications. Thank you for your help in getting the word out!

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