October 17, 2002

Solid Waste Management District Working To Clean Up Community

In its nine years in existence the Northeast Missouri Solid Waste Management District has spent more than $1 million to administer waste reduction and recycling projects in Adair, Clark, Knox, Lewis, Schuyler and Scotland counties.

That service will continue courtesy of a $119,723 grant from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. Overall, DNR has awarded more than $3,316,000 in grants to projects to recycle or reduce waste. The grants are funded by the Solid Waste Management Fund, which is made up of fees collected in conjunction with tipping fees collected for each ton of waste disposed of in Missouri

landfills, as well as fees collected from transfer stations that transfer

waste out-of-state.

In seven years the local solid waste management group has undertaken numerous projects to help clean up the six-county region while lowering the solid waste production in the region.

The campaign started back in 1993 with a public awareness project regarding roadside dumping. Since then the organization has funded the purchase of equipment and supplies for local recycling services. Funds also have been made available to city and county government's to purchase waste reduction equipment such as brush chippers.

One of the most popular waste management projects began in 1997 with the first waste tire collection when 10,895 tires were recycled in Clark, Knox and Scotland counties. The project has continued every year since topping out with 19,417 tires collected in all six counties in 1999. Overall nearly 70,000 tires have been kept out of ditches and landfills and instead been turned into playground surfacing materials by the project.

The NEMO Waste Management District has budgeted nearly $25,000 this year for white goods collection drives. These opportunities are similar to the tire collection process, only users can dispose of unwanted appliances and other metal products instead of tires.

The Scotland County white goods collection will be held Friday, October 18 at the Scotland County Fairgrounds. (See the ad inside this issue on Page 6B.)

Memphis has also benefited from the program with the addition of recycling opportunities for household items.

Industrial Opportunities, Inc. of Kahoka provides a drop trailer in Memphis for citizens to leave recyclable goods such as cans, plastic, paper and cardboard.

Manager Charles Allen indicated the company receives roughly one trailer load per week of recyclables from Memphis.

"The addition of Memphis to our service has gone very well," Allen stated. "The project has been well received and the people taking advantage of the trailer have done a real nice job keeping it clean."

Overall the recycling project has added more than 100 ton this year to the totals of goods kept out of the region's landfills.

Rick Gregory of Northeast Missouri Regional Planning Commission serves as the administrator for the NEMO Waste Management District. He indicated that the district has received $941,832 in DNR grants over the past nine years. Local companies, cities and counties that have received grant funds have added more than $66,000 in grantee matches bringing the total expenditures for the district to more than $1 million.

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