Pennsylvania’s CHEMSWEEP to Provide Safe Pesticide Disposal in 21 Counties in 2013
Harrisburg– Agricultural businesses and pesticide applicators in 21 counties can dispose of unwanted pesticides safely and easily in 2013 through the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture’s CHEMSWEEP program.
The program is offered in different counties each year. In 2013 it will be available in Bedford, Berks, Blair, Bradford, Butler, Columbia, Cumberland, Delaware, Lackawanna, Lawrence, Luzerne, McKean, Montgomery, Montour, Northumberland,
Snyder, Somerset, Sullivan, Union, Warren and York counties.
"CHEMSWEEP provides a safe, legal way to dispose of unwanted pesticides," said Agriculture Secretary George Greig. "For 20 years, the program has helped our agriculture industry properly dispose of more than two million pounds of unwanted or unusable pesticides, helping to safeguard our environment."
Every year, many pesticide products are discontinued, phased out or become unusable, leaving growers, commercial establishments and applicators with potentially dangerous and toxic materials that cannot be placed in landfills. The unwanted pesticides often become a safety hazard and an environmental concern through long-term storage in garages, barns or other areas.
Licensed pesticide applicators, pesticide dealers and commercial pesticide application businesses from the designated counties are eligible to participate by completing the CHEMSWEEP registration/inventory form that will be direct-mailed. The
registration period ends March 31. An independent contractor hired by the state agriculture department collects and packages all waste pesticides at each participating location, primarily for incineration at facilities approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
CHEMSWEEP covers the disposal cost for the first 2,000 pounds per participant. Above that level, participants are billed at the
agriculture department’s contracted price.
The program is funded through annual registration fees paid by pesticide manufacturers and applicators.
For more information, visit www.pda.state.pa.us/CHEMSWEEP.
Nicole L. C. Bucher, 717-787-5085
Don Gilbert | Environmental Specialist
Bureau of Plant Industry
Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture
2301 North Cameron Street | Harrisburg, PA 17110
Phone: 717.772.5210 | Fax: 717.783.3275
Small Business Energy Efficiency Grant
The Department of Environmental Protection announces an upcoming grant opportunity for small businesses undertaking energy efficiency projects. The Small Business Energy Efficiency Grant Program provides a 25% matching grant, to a maximum award of $25,000, to enable a small business in this Commonwealth to purchase and install energy efficient equipment or processes that will result in improved energy efficiency. An eligible applicant must be an independent for- profit small business with 100 employees or less whose business or facility is located within this Commonwealth.
For questions regarding the eligibility of projects, visit the grant's web site at www.depweb.state.pa.us (DEP Keyword: Small Business Energy Efficiency Grant Program) or contact Dave Barnes, Office of Energy and Technology Deployment, Small Business Ombudsman's Office at (717) 783-84111 or firstname.lastname@example.org before submitting an application. For assistance in submitting an application, persons may also contact the Small Business Development Center's Environmental Management Assistance Program, at www.askemap.org or (877) 275-3627 or the Pennsylvania Technical Assistance Program, at www.penntap.psu.edu or (814) 865-0427. The grant application and guideline package are available on the Department's web site at www.depweb.state.pa.us (DEP Keyword: Small Business Energy Efficiency).
By: Richard Hergenroeder, P.E, Covanta Energy Corporation Director of Environmental Science and
Community Affairs in its Mid-Atlantic Region
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Mercury-Free Thermostat Act bans the sale, installation and
disposal of mercury thermostats effective December 8, 2009. A goal of the Act is to give wholesalers,
contractors, retailers, service technicians and homeowners a convenient opportunity to recycle out-of-service mercury thermostats. The ban only applies to old thermostats removed from service and intended for disposal. The ban does not affect mercury thermostats currently in use and these do not need to be pulled from service.
Photo from the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection website (http://www.depweb.state.pa.us/landrecwaste/cwp/view.asp?A=1242&Q=544862)
The Commonwealth has accepted plans to collect and recycle thermostats from two organizations: Thermostat Recycling Corporation and EWC Controls.
Thermostat Recycling Corporation (TRC)
According to the Thermostat Recycling Corporation’s Mercury-Switch Thermostat Collection and Recycling Plan (pdf), the company has voluntarily collected and recycled mercury-switch thermostats since their program’s inauguration in nine states in 1997. TRC was founded by Honeywell, White-Rodgers, and General Electric and represents 25 manufacturers that distributed over 60 brands of mercury switch thermostats. Pennsylvania Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) collection sites, retailers and wholesalers of heating, air conditioning (HVAC), electrical systems, or plumbing products and accessories are eligible to participate in the TRC program as collection locations. Pennsylvania contractors that service/maintain heating, air conditioning, electrical or plumbing are also eligible to participate as collection locations.
TRC provides recycling containers to participating facilities for a modest, one-time participation fee. Each container is shipped with program guidelines, a plastic liner, twist ties for sealing the liner, zip ties for sealing the container, and a pre-paid universal waste shipping label for return shipment. Upon receipt of a container, the empty container is returned with guidelines, a new liner, zip and twist ties, and a pre-paid universal waste shipping label. Participation forms are available on TRC’s website www.thermostat-recycle.org and are also available upon request by calling the TRC toll fee line at 1-800-238-8192.
EWC Controls manufactures forced air zone controls. Some of EWC Controls’ products contain thermostats produced by other manufacturers with the EWC Controls brand name on the product. EWC Controls customers who are not participating in the TRC program can recycle mercury thermostats through the EWC Controls’ program and should access their website at www.ewccontrols.com for details.
Covanta Energy Corporation
Covanta operates energy-from-waste facilities in Dauphin, Delaware, Lancaster, Montgomery and York counties where it can process 7,908 tons of municipal waste daily. Mismanaged mercury can be toxic and can bioaccumulate in mammals and fish. As a component to the company’s Clean World Initiative, Covanta Energy has partnered with its clients to help remove mercury from the waste stream and the environment.
Information and the photo used in this article can be found at the following websites:
Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection –
Thermostat Recycling Corporation – http://www.thermostat-recycle.org/
EWC Controls – http://www.ewccontrols.com/