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The Guam Environmental Protection Agency (Guam EPA) today announced the results of its Hasso Guam! household hazardous waste collection event on January 31. The event netted 4200 gallons of used oil, 2365 gallons of flammable paints, 2475 gallons of latex paints, 3681 lead acid (car) batteries, and 1151 fluorescent light bulbs that may have otherwise been sent to the Ordot Dump or disposed of illegally.
"Properly disposing of the hazardous materials that we all have in and around our homes is one of the simplest things we can do protect the health of our families and our island," said Guam EPA Administrator Fred M. Castro. "These results highlight the importance of the Hasso Guam program in protecting our island's water and land resources from improper disposal of these materials," he added.
Guam EPA contractors will now properly dispose of the hazardous materials collected at the event. Paints, solvents, thinners, batteries, and other hazardous items will be shipped to the U.S. mainland for disposal at a U.S. EPA-licensed facility. Used oil will be burned on island at one of the power plants to recover energy.
January's Hasso Guam event was the first event under Guam EPA's new Interim Household Hazardous Waste Collection program. The program is part of a one million dollar supplemental environmental project (SEP) that the Government of Guam must implement as part of the Ordot Consent Decree settlement.
Guam EPA today released a fact sheet on the SEP, which is available at the Agency's Web site, guamepa.govguam.net. Among other items, the SEP will fund the establishment of a permanent collection and drop-off site for household hazardous materials.
Guam EPA would like to remind residents that it is both illegal and harmful to the environment to dispose of household hazardous materials such as paints, thinners, solvents, used oil, coolant, batteries, fluorescent light bulbs, and similar products in their regular trash or by dumping down storm drains, in the sink or toilet, or by burning.
Although Guam EPA plans to hold additional collection events in 2004, residents still have options for safely and properly disposing of these wastes at other times. A complete list of proper disposal locations and tips is available at guamepa.govguam.net/education/household.html. Please note that many private companies may charge fees for their disposal services.
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