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Yanks in search of pills to celebrate Earth Day

pills.jpgIf Greenbang were to approach you in the street and ask if you’ve got any old pills or e-waste, what would be your response? Chances are you’d shrug your shoulders and point her in the direction of some ‘nu rave’ warehouse party in East London. That or get on the blower to the cops and report some drug-and-gadget fiend bothering you.

Over in the USA, the magnificently named Earth Protection Agency (EPA) is putting this shout out to the residents of Chicago. Though they’re not looking to ‘party’. Rather, it’s part of their Great Lakes Earth Day Challenge. The EPA reckons its “goal is to collect at least one million pounds of electronics, or ‘e-waste’, and one million pills during Earth Month to keep contaminants out of the Great Lakes.”

Says the EPA over 125 communities, organisations and businesses in the Great Lakes region are sponsoring collections while the agency is putting up $500,000 in grants to help fund 26 collections.

The EPA is asking the public to bring old electronics and expired medicines for safe disposal at Chicago’s Household Chemicals and Computer Recycling plant at Goose Island. The EPA wants to get people used to the idea of not flushing their pills down the bog, which has a serious effect on the local environment.

Says Lyman Welch, Water Quality Program manager for the Alliance for the Great Lakes:

“Flushing unwanted medicines down toilets leads to potential contamination of the Great Lakes and drinking water supplies.

“Disposing of unused and expired medicines through collection programs is a responsible step everyone can take now to prevent water pollution at the source.”

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