Record amount of waste pesticide collected & destroyed

BISMARCK – North Dakota farmers, ranchers, homeowners and others brought in a record amount of old, unusable and banned pesticides – more than 145 tons –in the 2012 Project Safe Send collections.

“This year's total far exceeds the previous record of 108 tons in 2010,” said Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring. “These results again demonstrate the continued need for this valuable program which enables people to safely and affordably get rid of products they can no longer use or do not need.”

Goehring explained that most of the collected pesticides – agricultural and home products that control plant and animal pests, such as insects, weeds, fungi and rodents – are no longer registered for use in North Dakota or have been damaged or are no longer of use to their owners.

“We did collect some banned products like DDT, arsenic compounds and sodium cyanide at three locations,” he said.

The collections were conducted during July in 12 communities: Bismarck, Bottineau, Casselton, Harvey, Hettinger, Jamestown, Killdeer, Langdon, Larimore, Lisbon, Minot and Tioga.

Casselton recorded the largest collection with 63 people bringing in 68,291 pounds. Jamestown was second with 52,290 pounds of unusable pesticides.

The North Dakota Department of Agriculture contracted Veolia Environmental Services, Blaine, MN, to collect, repackage and transport the waste chemicals to incinerators.

“To expand our Project Safe Send outreach, we enhanced our working relationship with NDSU county extension agents and it was well received.” Goehring said.

Fees paid by pesticide manufacturers to register their products in North Dakota fund Project Safe Send.

“Project Safe Send is a recognized model as a means for the public to help ensure a healthy environment by safely getting rid of these chemicals,” Goehring said. “The need for this program will continue, as more people learn how it benefits them and as more pesticides become obsolete and are no longer usable for current applications.”