MOUNT VERNON — Knox County’s hazardous waste recycling day in October brought in less material than in 2007, according to county recycling coordinator Linda Montgomery.
The semiannual household hazardous waste recycling day was held Oct. 3 at the Knox County Fairgrounds. The DKMM Solid Waste District, which handles recycling programs for Delaware, Knox, Marion and Morrow counties, collected household hazardous waste, scrap tires, computers and cell phones for environmentally appropriate processing and recycling.
The lower total was expected, due to the decision by DKMM not to collect old paint because of the rising costs of commercial recycling of paint. Additionally, Montgomery said, the recession economy might see many households trying to get greater use out of some materials before disposal.
This year, 498 vehicles brought recycling items, compared to 782 in 2007. This turnout is less than half the peak figure of 1,075 vehicles in 2003. The vehicles represented 655 households in 2009, down from 972 in 2007, as well as down from the peak participation of 1,749 households seen in 2001.
The number of tires collected was down slightly, 8,077, from the 2007 peak of 9,374. Also down were such items as bulk used oil, aerosols, lead-acid and dry cell batteries, antifreeze, propane and mercury.
Despite the lower number of vehicles, some categories saw increases, none more so than computers, which went from 13,470 in 2007 to 22,460 this year. Also seeing increases were bulk fuels, poisons/pesticides, nickel-cadmium and lithium batteries.
According to the geographical breakdown of participants, 434 vehicles were from Knox County, 27 from Delaware County, two from Marion County, 29 from Morrow County, three from Richland County, two from Licking County and one from Coshocton County. Of those, 275 participants had never attended a collection before. A total of $2,484.31 was taken in donations, as well as $4,902 in tire processing fees. This is less than half the cost of recycling these materials.
The total cost for the two recycling events held this year in the DKMM district is $53,465.65. This is almost half the cost from previous years, when paint recycling was accepted as well. For those who do have old paint, Montgomery explained that paint can be safely disposed of at home by opening the old paint and adding kitty litter, sawdust or any type of paint hardener. Once the paint is completely dry, it can be safely disposed of into the local solid waste system.
Household Hazardous Waste events are open to all residents residing in Delaware, Knox, Marion and Morrow counties. Collection events will be held in Delaware and Morrow counties in 2010.
Montgomery can be called at the Knox County Commissioners’ office at 393-6704 for those who have questions regarding the household hazardous waste events or recycling in general.