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Making an Environmental Difference

Cities and Counties throughout the state are gearing up to collect household hazardous waste items to help safely clean up the local environments.

Household hazardous waste is considered flammable, toxic, reactive, or corrosive and should not be placed with regular garbage.

Jackson County’s annual collection event is from 8 am to noon on Saturday at the Singing River Mall Parking lot in Gautier. The one-day event will take place rain or shine.

“This is considered a great way to continue to protect the environment and celebrate Earth Day,” said Ronda Powell, Jackson County Solid Waste Director. “Proper disposal of these chemicals and products are important to our health and our environment.”

Typical household hazardous items include cleaning fluids, pesticides, mercury thermometers and thermostats, fluorescent lamps, lithium and button batteries, aerosols, adhesives, medications, brake fluid, swimming pool chemicals, and paint thinner.

Items typically not accepted include explosive or radioactive materials, PCBs, medical or biological waste, business waste, household garbage, electronic waste, compressed cylinders, and 55-gallon drums. There is a five-tire limit and each tire must be off the rim.

Items should be left in their original containers.

Water-based paints should be consolidated into as few containers as possible for the event. Empty water-based paint cans can be thrown into household garbage after the paint has dried.

Those participating in collections should ensure all containers are sealed and transported in the trunk or back of a vehicle away from passengers to keep everyone safe from toxic fumes and allow volunteers to remove the items without anyone exiting the vehicle.

“You can expect a line and possibly a two-hour wait,” Powell said.

She added that the annual events are the only chance residents have to properly dispose of hazardous material.

“If you don’t get here this year, you’ll have to wait until next year,” Powell said.

The collections in cities and counties throughout the state typically coincide with Earth Day and other Spring events.

The city of Oxford‘s household hazardous waste collection is also Saturday from 8 am until 3 pm at the Lafayette County Multipurpose Arena in Oxford.

DeSoto County’s Household Hazardous Waste Day is scheduled for May 14 at the Landers Center from 8 am until 1 pm.

The Warren County Hazardous Waste Day is set for June 25 at Dana Road Elementary School.

Mississippians are required to participate in hazardous waste collections in their county or city. Organizers check license plates, IDs and a form must be filled out.

The Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality provides grants for annual hazardous waste collections and several cities and counties acquire private donations.

Jackson County’s waste collection partners include Mississippi Power Company, Waste Oil Collectors, Chevron, Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality, Waste Management, Jackson County Board of Supervisors, Singing River Electric Power, and the cities of Pascagoula, Ocean Springs, Gautier, and Moss Point.

Check with your respective city or county for a household hazardous waste collection event near you.

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