Pesticide Container Recycling & Pesticide Waste Disposal

Pesticide Disposal Program

Outdated, solidified, unusable pesticide products sit isolated in the corners or back shelves of many pesticide storage buildings just waiting for the day they meet their fate.  Changes in agricultural production have led to the development of new pesticides and the cancellation of older commonly used pesticide products.  In many cases these canceled pesticides can no longer be used legally and disposal of these materials must be handled safely and effectively by hazardous waste facilities.  Such disposal costs can be very expensive and are often so great that growers may be forced to store these pesticides until a better disposal solution is made available or, in some cases, seek out illegal disposal methods.  Improper disposal of these pesticides can lead to environmental problems such as groundwater contamination or contamination of soils, plants, and animals.  In recent years it has become obvious that some mechanism for the disposal of canceled/suspended pesticides is necessary for Georgia.

In response to these environmental concerns, 1994 Senate Resolution 486 encouraged the Georgia Department of Agriculture to continue interacting with other agricultural organizations to formulate pilot programs to collect and dispose of these materials.  All together, three pilot programs were launched and 43,000 pounds of pesticide were collected.  Since those three pilot programs, approximately 1,000,000 pounds of pesticides have been collected.  These pesticide collections, funded by the Georgia General Assembly, are referred to as Georgia Clean Days and have occurred all over the State of Georgia.  If you have questions about Clean Day please contact Rick Hayes at Ricky.Hayes@agr.georgia.gov.  

Refer to the label affixed to the pesticide container you are using for instructions on how to properly dispose of the container when emptied.

PESTICIDE CONTAINER RECYCLING PROGRAM

Empty pesticide containers can be a nuisance: sometimes they are not easy to dispose of and they clutter workshops and storage areas.  It is against the law to reuse or burn pesticide containers in the State of Georgia, so how can you dispose of your empty, unwanted pesticide containers???  Recycle them!!!  Properly rinsed pesticide containers can be chipped and used to make such things as plastic fence posts, palates and various other industrial supplies.  There are several locations around Georgia where you can bring your empty pesticide containers to be chipped, free of charge.  This program, funded through funds received by the Georgia Department of Agriculture from the Georgia General Assembly, has collected and chipped over 800,000 pounds of empty pesticide containers.  Please contact Rick Hayes by phone at (404) 656-4958 or e-mail Ricky.Hayes@agr.georgia.gov for more information on container chipping locations as they are subject to change.  You may also visit http://www.usagrecycling.com for information on container recycling.

Funding for GEORGIA CLEAN DAY has been appropriated by the Georgia General Assembly & EPA for 2014.

Small quantities of waste pesticides may be disposed of as household trash.  For disposal of larger quantities please contact our office at 404-656-4958.

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