New Orleans Holds 8th Annual Household Hazardous Materials Cleanup

Orleans Parish residents were able to bring paint, pesticides, antifreeze, garden chemicals, flammable liquids, muriatic acid, small mercury devices, aerosols, pool shock, household cleaners, motor oil, automobile batteries, and motorcycle batteries for disposal or recycling.

The city of New Orleans announced May 31 that its Department of Sanitation’s 8th Annual Household Hazardous Materials Collection Day was a success, with dozens of volunteers and partners assisting in the collection and recycling of tons of materials from approximately 871 vehicles. Besides paper, plastics, metals, cardboard, Mardi Gras beads, electronic waste, light bulbs, small batteries, microwave ovens, tires, and organics collected at the city's Recycling Drop-Off Center, Orleans Parish residents were able to bring paint, pesticides, antifreeze, garden chemicals, flammable liquids, muriatic acid, small mercury devices, aerosols, pool shock, household cleaners, motor oil, automobile batteries, and motorcycle batteries for disposal or recycling.

Volunteers and partners came from a variety of groups and organizations, including the U.S. Army Reserve, Louisiana National Guard, The Green Project, Young Leadership Council, St. Bernard Project, Sewerage & Water Board, Ministerio Nueva Jerusalem, Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry, Keep New Orleans Beautiful, active and past military veterans from the Army, Navy and Marines, Capital Area Corporate Recycling Council, Republic Recycling Services, and Heritage-Crystal Clean.

This year, the city and The Green Project expanded the partnership to include an opportunity for other non-profits to access useable paint that was collected. In addition to The Green Project, some of the groups that picked up paint were Grace for the Greenlight, Lowernine, Broadmoor Improvement Association, Bike Easy, Rebuilding Together, Court 13, Paint & Design, Metairie Academy School, Sugar Roots Farm, New Testament Baptist Church, and several artists. This initiative resulted in the reuse of more than 1,000 gallons of paint.

"As we prepare for the start of another hurricane season, it is very important that residents focus on reducing, reusing or recycling as many items as possible," said Cynthia Sylvain-Lear, director of the Department of Sanitation. "We are very pleased to offer environmentally appropriate options for disposing or recycling of household hazardous materials residents no longer want or need. We especially want residents to be aware of the items that should not be placed in curbside garbage or recycling carts or poured down storm drains which flow to Lake Pontchartrain."

Since 2010, the city has recycled more than 47,025 tons of materials collected curbside and more than 1,106 tons of materials collected at its Drop-Off Center. In addition, the city collected and transported more than 2,272 tons of illegally dumped waste tires to a processor that recycles the tires and directed its contractors to transport more than 3,900 tons of green waste to The Composting Network.

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