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United States Department of Agriculture

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Archived Reports and
News Articles 

Previous Event Reports

Archived News Articles
2012
2011
20102009
2008 ● 2007 ● 2006


Previous Event Reports: 
 
        ● 2009 White House "Closing the Circle"  
 
         ● Final Report of Sidney, MT 2008 event (PDF; 1066 KB)

        ● Final Report of Sidney, MT 2007 event (PDF; 1230 KB)

        ● Final Report of Sidney, MT 2006 event (PDF; 1297 KB)

        ● Final Report of Sidney, MT 2005 event (PDF; 1511 KB)

  


Weekend event is last chance to “E-rase your E-waste” for 2012

 

This weekend is your last chance to clear that old computer out of your closet before the snow flies.  The “E-rase your E-waste” program is hosting its final collection for 2012 this Friday and Saturday, Sept 7-8, at the Richland County Shop, 2140 W. Holly in Sidney, next to the Fairgrounds.

 

Already 160-plus individuals, businesses, government agencies and organizations have recycled 291 monitors; 283 processors, 166 printers and 139 TVs, along with thousands of smaller items at the group’s four FREE summer mini-collections, according to organizers. That amounts to three semi-truck loads.

 

The Sept 7-8 weekend wrap up event is again FREE to the public, organizers report, and will run from noon to 7 pm on Friday (Sept. 7) and 10 am to 2 pm on Saturday (Sept. 8).

 

“The times are slightly different this year,” Jackie Couture, co-coordinator of the e-waste event, said. “We’re starting a little later both days, than we have in the past, but we’re also extending the hours a bit at the end of each day which we hope will be helpful for people”

 

For those interested in more details on the event and acceptable items for e-cyling, help is available at www.ars.usda.gov/npa/nparl/ewaste. Businesses, schools and other organizations with large amounts of e-waste to recycle are asked to make an appointment to drop off their items by calling Couture at 406-433-9422. Please leave a message.

 

The “E-rase your E-waste” program allows area businesses and residents to dispose of their old, obsolete electronic products in an environmentally friendly manner. The annual collection effort is coordinated by the USDA-ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Lab in Sidney, the Richland County Local Emergency Planning Committee, and Richland Opportunities, Inc., aided by volunteers with the Retired Seniors Volunteer Program. Richland County provides free use of its shop for the collection and storage and UNICOR serves as the e-cycler for the event. Helping to provide equipment supplies and promotional funding are Sidney Health Center, Richland County Solid Waste, Lower Yellowstone REA, Sidney Sugars and the Montana Department of Environmental Quality.

 

“It takes a lot of help to hold these events and everyone’s support and cooperation is very much appreciated,” Couture said.  “In particular, we want to thank our RSVP volunteers, most of whom help us out regularly at all our collections, year after year. We definitely couldn’t do it without them!”

 

More help, however, is always welcome, Couture added, noting that if anyone is interested in volunteering to help with the unloading and packaging of items at the September event, they should please call Rita Jacobsen at 406-433-2207 to sign up.

 

For more information on the E-rase your E-waste event, please contact Jackie Couture at 406-433-9422 or Cindy Eleson at 406-488-3341.

 

 
 

Local E-waste Event Sets Another Record in 2011
SIDNEY, MT -  Area residents, businesses, schools and government agencies recycled their obsolete electronics in record numbers in 2011, “E-rase your E-waste” event organizers reported last year.
 
“We’ve topped all of our previous collection events,” Jackie Couture, co-chair of the local “E-rase your E-waste” Committee, said. “There were more participants and more electronics recycled than ever before.”

 

Mini-Collection Dates

In particular, the group’s new summer month, mini-collection events attracted a lot of participation in 2011, Couture and fellow e-waste committee member Butch Renders said, which means they will likely be continued in the future. The standard 3-7 pm collection hours for those events also appeared to aid participation, Couture said, explaining “We’ve held early collection events before, although just in August, but they were held over the noon hour and didn’t draw as well as this year’s events.

 

Collection Totals

Couture reported that a total of 334 individuals, businesses and organizations brought e-waste to last year’s collection events, including the four summer month mini-collections and the final weekend collection held Sept. 9-10. “That’s a record number already and then they recycled nearly 60,000 pounds of e-waste – or 59,630 pounds to be exact – another record amount,” she said.

 

Altogether the program collected more than 410 monitors, 432 CPUs, 219 printers, 204 televisions, 102 phones, as well as hundreds of other items, organizers said.

 

Luckily the group had lots of help with the events, Renders noted. “The Richland County Solid Waste Department let us use their shop space again for all our events,” he said. “And they also let us store the e-waste there until it could be picked up, which we very much appreciated.”

 

Thank You to Volunteers and Other Supporters!

Renders and Couture thanked all the volunteers who came out to unload, load, palletize and shrink wrap the items, and applauded the Richland County RSVP program as a major supporter of the effort. “We couldn’t have done it without them,” Renders said. “Every year they arrange to have volunteers available for this event and a lot of the same volunteers return year after year.”

 

“We also had some new faces this year,” Couture added. “Several members of the Sidney High School Key Club helped at a couple of our summer events, which made a big difference, so we want to thank them, too, as well as all our other volunteers.”

 

A number of local businesses also stepped up again to provide pallets, cardboard, shrink wrap and promotional support to aid the effort, Couture noted. They included Sidney Health Center, Sidney Sugars, Anchor Drilling Fluids, Richland Opportunities, Inc, and the Montana Department of Environmental Quality. “Our thanks to them,” Couture noted, adding “We also had a couple of businesses from Williston provide pallets this year, so we want to thank them as well. They were National Varco Oilwell and NAPA Auto Parts.”

 

“And, of course, a big thank you to our e-cycler, UNICOR, which allows us to provide this service free of charge to local residents,” Renders said.

 

“All in all it was another great year,” Couture noted.
 


 

E-rase your E-waste adding summer collection dates in 2011

Summer month e-waste collections are being added to this year’s “E-rase your E-waste” effort, beginning Thursday, May 19, according to local organizers, and leading up to the annual weekend collection set for Friday and Saturday, Sept. 9-10.

The committee has set aside the third Thursday of every month (May through August) to do a collection, according to E-rase you E-waste co-chair Jackie Couture. The dates for the monthly collections include May 19th, June 16th, July 21st and August 18th. Collection times will be from 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm at the Richland County Shop, next to the Fairgrounds at 2140 W. Holly in Sidney. Participants are asked to use a new entryway to the shop this year for all of the 2011 E-rase your E-waste events. To get there, head south on Airport Road then turn left into the gated yard. Signs will be posted.

UNICOR will again serve as the e-cycler for all the collections, and all acceptable items can be recycled for FREE, Couture noted, both at the summer Thursday collections and at the community weekend event Sept. 9-10.

Volunteers will be available to help with loading and unloading, however, businesses, schools and other organizations with large amounts of e-waste to recycle are asked to make an appointment to drop off their items by calling Jackie Couture at 406-433-9422. Please leave a message.

Where possible larger recyclers are also encouraged to palletize their own items, or send extra staff to help get it done at the summer events. Details on approved items and how to palletize them can be found in a handout posted to the USDA-ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Lab’s e-waste website at www.ars.usda.gov/npa/nparl/ewaste. In addition, a handy “Items List” recycling form is also available at the website to further speed processing time for participants bringing both large or small amounts, Couture noted.

The E-rase your E-waste effort in Sidney is coordinated by members of the Richland County Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), Richland Opportunities Inc., and volunteers with other community organizations including the RSVP program. Several local businesses, including Sidney Health Center, Lower Yellowstone REA and Sidney Sugars, have also provided packaging, packing and promotional support in the past, and similar support is expected this year, Couture said, adding that already the MT Department of Environmental Quality has committed funds for advertising the event.

The city of Sidney and Richland County have also provided significant financial support over the years, while the USDA-ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Laboratory in Sidney continues to provide significant organizational and promotional support.

In addition to partnering with MT DEQ and the Richland County Solid Waste Department, the Sidney E-rase your E-waste team is once again hoping to team up with Williston, ND to hold a joint weekend collection event and the group is also exploring another joint event with Glendive, MT. Details on those efforts will be available later, according to Couture. In the meantime, residents from both areas can also bring their e-waste to the summer collection events in Sidney, she said.

While encouraging area residents to e-cycle, Couture also noted that e-waste in Montana and North Dakota is not yet regulated and in many instances can legally be disposed of in local landfills, although some do charge a fee. However, because of the toxic substances contained in e-waste such as lead, mercury and heavy metals that could cause serious environmental and human health problems, Couture says many individuals and businesses opt for e-cycling where available, even at added costs.

And that’s been particularly true in Richland County, Couture said, where collections have grown nearly every year, even when participants in the past had to pay for the privilege. The interest in e-cycling reflects growing public concern for this escalating problem, according to Couture. And the great thing about e-cycling, Couture says, is that 98.5% of e-waste materials can be reused in some other fashion, meaning longer landfill life as well as a healthier environment! 
 

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2010 E-rase your E-waste event FREE to public!

Richland County’s sixth annual “E-rase your E-waste” event, scheduled for Friday and Saturday, Sept. 10 -11, has a few new features this year. Chief among them is the addition of a new e-cycler, UNICOR, who will be taking all approved items for free, organizers announced this week. This year’s event also features a new location for the weekend collection: the Richland County Shop across from the fairgrounds (2140 W. Holly in Sidney). Previously the weekend event has been held at the USDA Agricultural Research Service’s Northern Plains Ag Research Lab, but the need for temporary storage and packaging space under the agreement with UNICOR prompted the move.

“We’re thrilled to be able to offer a free collection event this year for the community,” E-rase your e-waste co-chair Jackie Couture said. “For the past five years we’ve provided area residents an opportunity to dispose of their e-waste in an environmentally friendly manner, but previously there was a charge that made it hard for some to participate. Now everyone can join in!”

“We’d also like to thank the Richland County Solid Waste Department for letting us use their space for our weekend collection event and for providing help in packaging and loading,” Couture said. But while the department has agreed to load all the items collected on the Monday following, Couture and fellow committee member Butch Renders noted additional volunteers are needed to help during the actual collection event.

“Part of the reason this collection is free is because we’re required to package and palletize the items for shipping,” Renders noted. “And while we’re getting very generous help from Sidney Sugars, Sidney Health Center, and Lower Yellowstone REA in providing packaging materials and equipment, we could still use a few extra volunteers to help with the collection that day.” Volunteers will help direct traffic and unload and record the major electronic items collected, he noted, however, unlike past years, the items will no longer need to be weighed which should speed processing even with a larger turnout. Anyone interested in volunteering should contact either Renders at 406-433-2220 or Couture at 406-433-9422 and please leave a message.

As in the past, additional collection days are planned in August at the County Shop for those who may not be able to make the September event. This year, those collections are planned for Thursday, August 19, from 10 am to 2 pm (targeting the general public) and on Thursday, August 26, from 10 am to 2 pm (targeting businesses, schools and other entities with larger amounts to recycle). More details on those events will be provided soon, Couture said.

The E-rase your E-waste effort in Sidney is coordinated by members of the Richland County Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), Richland Opportunities Inc., and volunteers with other community organizations including the RSVP and CERT programs.

Providing promotional support again this year is the Montana Department of Environmental Quality and Lower Yellowstone REA.

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2009: 10 Ton Recycled at Event | Dates Set


 

10 tons recycled at weekend 2009 e-cycling event in Sidney

Items are documentedMore than 75 area residents, businesses, schools and government agencies recycled in excess of 19,720 pounds of electronic waste under the 2009 “E-rase your E-waste” program, according to event organizers.

That’s the second highest total collected since the program began five years ago, according to event co-coordinators Cindy Eleson of Richland Opportunities, Inc. and Jackie Couture of the Agricultural Research Service. The 2009 total was exceeded only by last year’s phenomenal 46,040 lbs. which included a one-time collection of more than 25,000 lbs. in outdated computer equipment that had been saved up by local schools.

“We want to thank everyone again for the great participation this year,” Eleson said. “For the third year in a row we’ve kept 10 Tons of e-waste out of our local landfill as a result of this event.”

Volunteers helping are appreciatedEleson and Couture are quick to thank the many local residents, businesses, organizations and schools who chose to “e-rase their e-waste” in 2009. Promotional support by local print and broadcast media, and the Montana Department of Environmental Quality and matching funding from Sidney Health Center, the City of Sidney, the Richland County Commissioners, Lower Yellowstone REA (all of Sidney) and Drill Iron Consulting and Bill’s Back 40 of Williston all helped once again to spur participation in the event, they noted.

“We also want to thank the Richland County Solid Waste Department for letting us collect and store e-waste at the county shop during the month of August,” Butch Renders, another committee member, said. “Every year we’ve had people tell us they can’t make our weekend event and then ask if we can take items another day. “With the help of the Solid Waste Department they could and did, bringing in over 1,100 pounds of e-waste to recycle. Bookkeepers station at 2009 event

“And again, a huge thank you to all our very dedicated volunteers this year who helped load all those tons of e-waste,” Renders said. “In particular, we want to thank Stan Lindblom, Betty Reisinger, and Bill Forrester for their efforts at our weekend event. Stan in particular has been helping regularly at this event for the past several years. In addition, we also want to thank Deak Reisinger, who assisted with our Thursday collections at the Richland County Solid Waste site.” Renders noted that all four of those individuals are with the local Retired Seniors Volunteer Program, which has provided volunteers to help with the weekend collection since its inception in 2005.

In addition to Sidney’s fifth year event, Williston, ND held its own third year companion collection this past weekend, pulling in around 15,000 pounds of e-waste for recycling in that community as of early Saturday morning, meaning the joint total topped 17 Tons! (Final figures for the Williston event were not yet available at press time.)

“This is a fun cooperative project,” Couture noted. “With the two communities working together, we can share an e-cyler and promotion efforts to help keep costs down and still get the word out in the region.”

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Dates set for 2009 E-rase your E-waste event

The dates for Richland County’s fifth annual “E-rase your E-waste” event have been set for Friday and Saturday, Sept. 11th and 12th, in the parking lot of the USDA-ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Laboratory in Sidney. The event provides area residents an opportunity to dispose of their old, obsolete electronic products in an environmentally friendly manner.

And for the second year in a row, the Richland County Solid Waste Department has joined the ‘E-rase your E-waste’ team by providing community members an alternate drop off place and time to recycle their outdated items. Under the arrangement, individuals and businesses can drop off their e-waste at the county shop site at 2140 W. Holly in Sidney from 11 am til 2 pm on any of the following Thursdays: August 13, 20 and 27 and again on September 3.

“We’ll have volunteers there to help with the weighing and loading,” E-rase your E-waste committee co-chair Jackie Couture said. “Unfortunately, the discounts typically offered at at the September community collection event will NOT be available for these alternative collections.” That means the cost to those recycling their outdated electronic items at the county shop will remain 40 cents per pound.

Discounts have been offered to E-rase your E-waste participants the past four years thanks to local sponsorships, and organizers are again looking for donors to help offset some of the costs for participants at the 2008 event. “We hope to again offer a discount on the first 200 lbs. recycled by an individual or business until the matching money runs out,” Couture said, adding that anyone wishing to donate to the effort can mail or drop off a check - made out to “LEPC/E-waste” – at Richland County LEPC; c/o Richland County Disaster & Emergency Services; 121 2nd Ave NW; Sidney, MT 59270.

“Generous donations from area businesses and organizations the past several years have helped reduce the fees for most participants, but we know the fees and limited collection dates are a problem for some,” Couture said. “That’s why we added the new drop off site at the Solid Waste Department last year and why we also try to let people know that there are additional e-cycling programs out there, at least for computers, that may be less expensive. For example, companies like Dell, Gateway and Apple all have recycling options for their customers, although the requirements can vary.” Couture recommended that interested persons should visit the website of their computer’s manufacturer for more information.

In addition to partnering with the Richland County Solid Waste Department, the Sidney E-rase your E-waste team is once again teaming up with Williston, ND to hold a joint weekend collection. The Williston event will be held at the Wal-Mart Supercenter in Williston the same times as the Sidney event on Friday and Saturday, Sept. 11-12. Discounts may vary at the two sites.

The E-rase your E-waste effort in Williston is coordinated by the Upper Missouri Public Health District and in Sidney by members of the Richland County Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), Richland Opportunities Inc., and volunteers with other community organizations including the RSVP and CERT programs.

While encouraging area residents to e-cycle, Couture also stressed that e-waste in Montana and North Dakota is not yet regulated and in many instances can legally be disposed of free of charge in local landfills, although some do charge a fee. However, because of the toxic substances contained in e-waste such as lead, mercury and heavy metals that could cause serious environmental and human health problems, Couture says many individuals and businesses opt for e-cycling where available, despite the added costs.

And that’s been particularly true in Richland County, she noted, where collections have continued to double nearly every year despite participants having to pay for the privilige. Last year the local “E-rase your E-waste” recycling event collected more than 46,000 pounds or 23 tons of electronic waste, according to Couture, with more than 40 tons collected since the event’s inception in 2005.

The interest in e-cycling reflects growing public concern for this escalating problem, according to Couture. And the great thing about e-cycling, Couture says, is that 98.5% of e-waste materials can be reused in some other fashion, meaning longer landfill life as well as a healthier environment!

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2008: Exceeds Previous Totals | Dates Set | Alternative Dates


E-waste recycling event again exceeds previous totals!

CPU's on pallet for transportatingMore than 90 local – and some not so local – residents, businesses, schools and government agencies recycled in excess of 46,040 pounds of electronic waste under the 2008 “E-rase your E-waste” program, according to event organizers.

“We want to thank everyone for the fantastic participation this year!” co-coordinators Cindy Eleson and Jackie Couture said. “We more than doubled the amount we collected last year – itself a record - and we exceeded the combined total for the past three years!” Couture noted, adding, “Altogether, we’ve recycled more than 40 tons of e-waste since the program’s inception in 2005!”

People came from as far away as Fort Peck and Baker, in addition to all corners of Richland County, Eleson said. While the number of participants was similar to last year’s turnout, she noted, the total amount collected increased 250%. And that doesn’t include the 15,000 plus pounds collected at the companion e-cycling event in Williston, Eleson added.

She and Couture are quick to thank the many local residents, businesses, organizations and schools who chose to “e-rase their e-waste” in 2008, thereby keeping a significant amounts of hazardous wastes contained in those items out of local landfills. Promotional support by local print and broadcast media, Mid-Rivers Cable, Lower Yellowstone REA, and the Montana Department of Environmental Quality and matching funding from Sidney Health Center, the City of Sidney, the Richland County Commissioners, Lower Yellowstone REA (all of Sidney) and Drill Iron Consulting and Bill’s Back 40 of Williston all helped once again to spur participation in the event, according to Butch Renders, another committee member.

2008 Early participants line-upOrganizers also noted a number of new features in this year’s “E-rase your E-waste” campaign that also contributed to the remarkable totals achieved. “We want to thank the Richland County Solid Waste Department for letting us collect and store e-waste at the county shop during the month of August,” Couture said. “Every year we’ve had people tell us they can’t make our weekend event and then ask if we can take items another day. This year we were able to accommodate them by adding collection hours on Thursdays in August at the County Shop thanks to the solid waste board.” That effort brought in an additional 1,600 pounds of e-waste, despite people having to pay the full price, she noted.

Local school districts were also major e-cyclers this year under a special reduced cost program provided especially for schools by Tattoine Electronics, Inc. of Cheyenne, WY, the e-cycler for the 2008 as well as past “E-rase your E-waste” events in Sidney and Williston. “The schools brought in slightly over 25,000 pounds, according to Couture, with the Sidney School system clearing its closets of more than 21,045 pounds of outdated equipment. Other participating schools included Lambert, Rau, Fairview and East Fairview.

Volunteers help out in 2008But it wasn’t just school districts participating in this year’s event, a dozen students from Caryn Fehilly’s Web Design Class at Sidney High School also pitched in to help document and load electronic waste at the event on Friday, Sept. 5. “We really appreciated their help and enthusiasm,” Renders said. “We also want to thank Caryn Fehilly for inviting Jackie and myself to speak to her class about the dangers of e-waste and the importance of recycling outdated electronics.”

“And again, a huge thank you to all our very dedicated volunteers this year who helped load all those tens of thousands of pounds of e-waste,” Renders said. “In particular, we want to thank Stan Lindblom with the RSVP program and Deb Waters and Jill Miller with ARS for their major efforts at the weekend event. And we look forward to seeing everyone again next year!”

 

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Dates Set for E-rase your E-waste in 2008!

The dates for Richland County’s fourth annual “E-rase your E-waste” event have been set for Friday and Saturday, Sept. 5th and 6th, in the parking lot of the USDA-ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Laboratory in Sidney. The E-rase your E-waste effort is coordinated by the Sidney ARS lab, the Richland County Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), Richland Opportunities Inc., and volunteers with other community organizations. The event provides area residents an opportunity to dispose of their old, obsolete electronic products in an environmentally friendly manner.

Over the past three years “E-rase your E-waste” has collected more than 36,000 pounds of electronic waste for recycling, according to Jackie Couture, a member of the organizing committee. “It’s grown every year,” she notes, despite being held only one weekend a year and despite the fees participants have to pay to recycle their old electronics. “Generous donations from area businesses and organizations have helped reduce the fees for some participants, but we know the fees and limited collection dates are a problem for some,” Couture said. “That’s why we try to let people know that there are additional e-cycling programs out there, at least for computers. Companies like Dell, Gateway and Apple all have recycling options for their customers, although the requirements can vary.”

Typically those larger computer manufacturers allow their customers to return their old computers for free, but participants in the programs frequently must pay shipping charges and abide by specific packaging instructions. Some manufacturers may even apply discounts to new computer purchases made by their customers returning old computers. “The requirements are different for each, but these programs do provide another alternative for people wanting to dispose of their e-waste in an environmentally friendly manner,” Couture said, adding that interested persons should visit the website of their computer’s manufacturer for more information.

But it’s not just individuals who can recycle their computers through the manufacturer. Couture noted that Apple Inc. has recently added a new program for schools that allows them to recycle their old, unwanted Mac computers, PCs, and qualifying peripherals from any manufacturer—for free. According to the Apple website, there’s no purchase required, and all accredited K–12 and higher education institutions with at least 25 pieces to be recycled are eligible to participate. However, to take advantage of this opportunity, schools need to register with Apple by June 30, Couture said. For more information, interested school officials should visit the following website: http://www.apple.com/education/shop/recycle/

Couture is quick to point out that e-waste in Montana and North Dakota is not yet regulated and in many instances can legally be disposed of in local landfills, although some do charge a fee. However, because of their interest in eliminating toxic substances from entering our landfills and potentially polluting our environment, Couture says many individuals and businesses opt for e-cycling where available.

The increased interest in e-cycling reflects growing public concern for this escalating problem, according to Couture. Every year millions of pounds of outdated consumer electronics end up in our landfills. These electronics put heavy metals and toxins such as lead, chromium, cadmium, mercury, beryllium, nickel, zinc, and brominated flame retardants into the environment. Preventing electronics such as computers, monitors, televisions, and cellular phones from being thrown away can prevent serious environmental and human health problems. And the great thing about e-cycling, Couture says, is that 98.5% of e-waste materials can be reused in some other fashion, meaning longer landfill life as well as a healthier environment!
 

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Alternative collection days, site added as part of 2008 E-rase your E-waste event!

At the request of community members unable to attend the Sept. 5-6 community-wide “E-rase your E-waste” weekend recycling event, organizers have partnered with the Richland County Solid Waste Department to provide alternate collection times and dates in the month of August.

“We’re pleased to announce that the Richland County Solid Waste Department has joined the ‘E-rase your E-waste’ team to expand electronics recycling in the county,” Butch Renders, one of the organizers of the event, said. “The Solid Waste Department will be helping to collect e-waste at select times during the month of August at the Richland County Public Works building - or as most people know it, the county shop by the fairgrounds - to accommodate those residents unable to participate in our annual Sept. 5-6 weekend event.”

According to Renders, individuals and businesses unable to attend the weekend event can drop off their obsolete electronic items at the county shop site at 2140 W. Holly in Sidney on any Thursday in August from 11 am to 2 pm. Those dates are Aug. Aug. 7, 14, 21, and 28, he noted. “We’ll have volunteers there to help with the weighing and loading and we’ll be able to issue recycling certificates for participants under an agreement with our e-cycler for the event,” Renders said. “Unfortunately, any discounts being offered at the September community collection event will NOT be available for these alternative collections in August.” That means the cost to those recycling their outdated electronic items at the county shop will remain 40 cents per pound.

Discounts have been offered to E-rase your E-waste participants the last two years thanks to local sponsorships, and organizers are again looking for donors to help offset some of the costs for participants at the 2008 event, according to Jackie Couture, another event organizer. “We hope to again to offer a discount on the first 200 lbs. recycled by an individual or business until the matching money runs out,” Couture said. Letters have been mailed out to select businesses and individuals seeking donations, she noted, adding that anyone else wishing to donate can send a check - made out to RCHD/CERT – to Richland County Health Dept. /CERT at 221 5th Street SW, Sidney, MT. Like Renders, Couture stressed that the discounts made possible through any matching donations will only be available to those participating in the Sept. 5-6 event, not those using the alternative drop site at the county shop.

In addition to partnering with the Richland County Solid Waste Department, the Sidney E-rase your E-waste team is once again teaming up with Williston to hold a joint event. This year both city sites will be open both days Friday, Sept. 5 from 8 am to 6 pm and Saturday, Sept. 6 from 8 am to 1 pm. The Sidney collection will be held in the parking lot of the USDA-ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Laboratory in Sidney, While the Williston event will be held at the Wal-Mart Supercenter in Williston.

The E-rase your E-waste effort is coordinated by the Sidney ARS lab, the Richland County Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), Richland Opportunities Inc., and volunteers with other community organizations including the RSVP and CERT programs. The event provides area residents an opportunity to dispose of their old, obsolete electronic products in an environmentally friendly manner.

Over the past three years “E-rase your E-waste” has collected more than 36,000 pounds of electronic waste for recycling, according to Jackie Couture, a member of the organizing committee. “It’s grown every year,” she notes, despite being held only one weekend a year and despite the fees participants have to pay to recycle their old electronics.

Couture is quick to point out that e-waste in Montana and North Dakota is not yet regulated and in many instances can legally be disposed of in local landfills, although some do charge a fee. However, because of their interest in eliminating toxic substances from entering our landfills and potentially polluting our environment, Couture says many individuals and businesses opt for e-cycling where available.

The increased interest in e-cycling reflects growing public concern for this escalating problem, according to Couture. Every year millions of pounds of outdated consumer electronics end up in our landfills. These electronics put heavy metals and toxins such as lead, chromium, cadmium, mercury, beryllium, nickel, zinc, and brominated flame retardants into the environment. Preventing electronics such as computers, monitors, televisions, and cellular phones from being thrown away can prevent serious environmental and human health problems. And the great thing about e-cycling, Couture says, is that 98.5% of e-waste materials can be reused in some other fashion, meaning longer landfill life as well as a healthier environment!

 

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9+ tons collected at 2007 E-rase your E-waste event!

Cars line up for event

Participants line up to recycle their e-waste with more than 9 tons collected at the 2007 "E-rase your E-waste" event in Sidney, MT.

The 2007 E-rase your E-waste committee would like to thank everyone who participated in this year’s “E-rase your E-waste” e-cycling effort and provide some additional information on the event that we thought might be of interest to the community.

First and foremost, the organizing committee wants to extend our appreciation to Sidney Health Center, City of Sidney, Lower Yellowstone REA, Drill Iron Consulting, and Sidney Motor Rewind for their generous donations to help spur participation in the event by cutting costs for participants. Thanks also to our local media, Mid-Rivers Telephone and Lower Yellowstone REA for providing promotional support. It definitely worked! Altogether we collected 18,460 pounds of e-waste at our 2007 event, nearly 9,000 MORE pounds than at our event in 2006. In fact, our 2007 event collected more than BOTH our 2005 and 2006 events combined thanks to the many local residents and businesses who – recognizing the importance of keeping these items out of our local landfills – chose to “e-rase their e-waste!”

Butch Renders documents items

Volunteer Butch Renders and others help process items for e-cycling at the 2007 event.

And what did they bring this year? 204 computer monitors, 43 laptops, 91 printers, 152 CPUs, 12 VCRs, 2 electric typewriters, 4 microwaves, 29 televisions, 5 scanners, 12 copiers and 1 cash register….just to list the major items. That (conservatively) adds up to more than 1,200 pounds of lead kept out of our local landfill (or any landfill), along with 0.44 lbs of mercury. Equally significant is the amount of non-hazardous materials kept out of any landfill since as much as 98% of recycled electronic waste is reused. That means a longer landfill life, in addition to a healthier environment; definitely a win-win situation for all of us!

And that brings us to another group that we’d like to recognize: our dedicated volunteers who helped unload, weigh and record the entire 18,460 pounds! Among them were a couple of volunteers from Williston, ND who were getting a few tips for how to organize their own E-rase your E-waste event the next day. This year’s unique cross-border collaboration was the first ever public collection event for that community. Thanks to all our volunteers for making both events run so smoothly!

Again, thanks to all our donors, participants and volunteers for making this latest “E-rase your E-waste” event so successful! We look forward to working with you again next year!

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"E-rase your E-waste" collects 9,336 pounds of obsolete equipment in 2006!

Participant received award buttonFor the second year in a row, more than 4 tons of electronic waste was collected during the “E-rase your E-waste” event held in Sidney this past Friday and Saturday. Altogether 9,336 pounds of e-waste – representing dozens of monitors, CPUs, printers and more – were brought in for recycling at the 2006 event, 1,000 more pounds than the previous year, organizers said.

“The response from the community was great,” CERT Coordinator & RSVP Director Kim Younquist, a member of the organizing committee, said. “We weren’t really expecting to do as well as last year, this second time around, but we actually did better.”

Both Younquist and fellow organizer Jackie Couture, head of the Richland County Local Emergency Planning Committee, stressed that much of that success can be attributed to Sidney Health Center, who, in addition to donating $800.00 in matching funds to lower costs for other community participants, also provided financial support for their own employees to participate this year. “They did a great job of encouraging everyone to participate and demonstrating their commitment to maintaining a healthy community,” Younquist said. “We had all the money used up by 9:30 Saturday morning and we still had people coming.”

“We also want to thank the other businesses and individuals who participated this year,” Couture added. “Several of them were repeat customers, such as Pella Lutheran Church and Lower Yellowstone REA, but we also had several new participants such as Montana-Dakota Utilities, Montana State University, Johnson Hardware and the Richland County Health Department. We even had some out-of-town groups participate including the Glendive Office of Public Assistance, McCody Concrete from Williston, North Dakota and the McKenzie County North Dakota Sheriff’s Department and about 5 to 10 more individuals that came from North Dakota.”

In addition to the increased pounds collected this year, organizers also saw a significant increase in the number of individuals participating in 2006. And all those smaller contributions added up, with individuals accounting for more than 1.5 tons (3,324 pounds) of the total e-waste collected this past weekend. And that’s without adding in items collected by the hospital from their employees, organizers noted.

Couture and Younquist said the vast majority of those participating in the event were very appreciative of the opportunity to recycle their obsolete electronic equipment. “Several people told us how glad they were that we were doing this and that they would like to see it become an annual event,” Couture said, adding that organizers are considering doing just that. She also noted that the representative from Glendive’s Office of Public Assistance reported that individuals in that city hope to get a similar e-cycling event started there.

As people continue to learn more about the hazards associated with dumping outdated electronic products, their interest in e-cycling increases, organizers noted. “Obviously people in this area see this as a very good and worthwhile event, since they continue to support it even though they have to pay to participate,” Younquist said.

Younquist and Couture, who is also the Health and Safety Officer with the USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) in Sidney, thanked the many volunteers who helped out with the effort this past weekend, as well as thanking local and area print and broadcast media for their help in publicizing the event. “Without them we would not have been nearly as successful,” Couture said. “We also want to thank Montana DEQ (Department of Environmental Quality) who provided additional promotional funding.”

Organizers for this year’s E-rase your E-waste event included Richland County LEPC, Richland Opportunities, Inc., the USDA-ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Laboratory, the Richland County Retired Seniors Volunteer Program, the Local Community Emergency Response Team, with support from Montana DEQ.

 

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Last Modified: 11/6/2013
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