Great Lakes Challenge a Recycling Success Story

Communities and residents of the Great Lakes basin have responded enthusiastically to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Great Lakes Earth Day Challenge to collect 1 million pounds of electronics for recycling and 1 million pills for safe disposal to keep contaminants out of the Great Lakes. During Earth Day week, 75 collections were held in towns and cities around the Great Lakes. Almost 70 more collections were scheduled for that next week.

"We are very pleased that so many people have stepped up to accept the Great Lakes Earth Day Challenge," said EPA Great Lakes National Program Manager and Region 5 Administrator Mary A. Gade. "Communities have reported collecting more medicines and electronics this Earth Week than at any previous collections."

EPA has received preliminary results from just 10 of those collections and can report that 2,184,000 pills have been turned in for safe disposal -- more than double the challenge goal. EPA also expects to far exceed its goal for electronic waste based on 216,000 pounds of electronics collected at six events.

An updated list of collections can be found at www.epa.gov/greatlakes/earthday2008/events.html.

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