EPA, Louisiana Encourage Proper Curbside Sorting of Trash and Debris

EPA and the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (LDEQ) encourage residents in hurricane-affected areas to collect trash and debris and place them curbside for proper disposal. Household chemicals can become hazardous in storm-damaged homes. Examples of materials that may need special disposal or recycling include electronics, batteries, computer hardware, paint, cleaning products, solvents, and lawn and garden products.

Where possible, residents should mark containers clearly before placing them out for disposal. Materials should be sorted curbside to help expedite clean up efforts. DEQ recommends placing similar materials together -- garbage and food; electronics; appliances and other "white" goods; household hazardous waste, construction debris, and vegetation debris.

Leaking containers should be placed in plastic bags to prevent spills. Household hazardous items should never be dumped or poured down drains or storm sewers. EPA and DEQ priorities for disposal are reuse, recycle or compost before disposal.

Freezers and refrigerators set out for recycling should have the food removed.

A graphic with curbside sorting guidance is available at http://www.epa.gov/region6/disaster/pdf/picking_up.pdf.

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