Pesticide container recycling enters 26th year

Container Recycling
Seasonal collection sites for the Nebraska Pesticide Container Recycling Program are open May-August as well as year-round, on certain days and by appointment. (Photo courtesy of the Pesticide Safety Education Program, Nebraska Extension)

April 19, 2017

Lincoln, Neb. — The annual statewide pesticide container recycling program, coordinated by Nebraska Extension’s Pesticide Safety Education Program, is in its 26th year. The recycling program encourages agricultural producers to bring clean containers to one of 19 sites at no cost to them. Contractors haul away the containers to be ground up and reused in industry-approved products such as drain tile, underground utility conduit, highway sign posts and other products.

“Many agricultural producers in the region have a sense of responsibility,” said John Wilson, Nebraska Extension educator based in Tekamah. “They feel recycling containers is the right thing to do.”

All containers for the pesticide container recycling should be intact, clean and dry. Nebraska’s program accepts 1- and 2.5-gallon plastic agricultural pesticide or crop oil containers; in some locations, 15-, 30- or 55-gallon drums are accepted. Containers must be pressure- or triple-rinsed and drained. Rinsate must be returned to the spray tank and used appropriately. Container caps, labels, booklets and slipcover plastic labels should all be removed and thrown away. Glued-on paper labels may be left on. Any rejected containers remain the property of the vehicle driver.

Ron Perkins is executive director of the Ag Container Recycling Council (ACRC) that contracts with the hauler, and oversees the national pesticide container recycling effort for its 44 member states. Perkins said in 2016 Nebraska collected 61,680 pounds of containers to be recycled. Nationally last year, ACRC contractors collected a record 11.1 million pounds of containers.

The program is funded by crop protection product manufacturers and distributors through the Virginia-based ACRC. 

“We’re in a time where profits are down and budgets are cut,” said PSEP coordinator Clyde Ogg. “These are the times when it’s probably most important to collaborate with these types of successful voluntary programs.” 

Information about the program is at http://pested.unl.edu/recycling, and information about proper rinsing is at http://extensionpubs.unl.edu/publication/9000016364796/rinsing-pesticide-containers/ .

Nebraska sites this year include six locations open May-August, while seven sites are open year-round. Other sites are open by appointment or specific dates.

Collection Sites

County collection sites are listed below by category and county. Sites accepting 15-, 30- and 55-gallon drums are noted.

Year-Round

  • Buffalo: Kearney Recycling Center, Kearney, Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cass: Wiles Bros. Fertilizer, Plattsmouth, call 402-298-8550 to schedule, accepts drums
  • Cuming: West Point Transfer Station, West Point, Monday through Friday, 8-noon, 1-5 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., accepts drums.
  • Dawson: Country Partners Cooperative, Lexington, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums
  • Sarpy: Farmers Union Co-op, Gretna, call 402-332-3315
  • Scotts Bluff: Gering Landfill, Gering, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. accepts drums
  • Washington: Washington County Recycling Center, Blair, Saturdays 8-noon, accepts drums

May – August

  • Antelope: Central Valley Ag, Royal, accepts drums
  • Dawes: Solid Waste Association of Northwest Nebraska, Chadron, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums
  • Holt: Central Valley Ag, O’Neill, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums
  • Kearney: Cooperative Producers Inc., Minden, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Saunders: Reid’s Farmacy, Ashland, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Open Specific Days

  • Dakota: Central Valley Ag, South Sioux City, June and July, Wednesdays, 11-noon, accepts drums
  • Dixon: Central Valley Ag, Newcastle, May 5, 19; June 2, 9; July 7, 14; Aug. 4, 11. 8-noon
  • Lancaster: Midwest Farmers Cooperative, Waverly, June 23, accepts drums; Midwest Farmers Cooperative, Bennet, July 14, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums
  • Otoe: Midwest Farmers Co-op, Nebraska City, July 24-28, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums

 By Appointment Only

  • Burt: Tekamah Transfer Station, Tekamah, year-round by appointment, 402-374-2929
  • Custer: Custer County Recycling, Broken Bow, 308-870-0313, accepts drums
  • Lincoln: North Platte Transfer Station, North Platte, 308-535-6700, accepts drums

# # #

Clyde Ogg
Pesticide Safety Education Program Educator
Nebraska Extension
402-472-1632
cogg1@unl.edu


Writer: Cheryl Alberts