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WI Probes Illegal Paint Dumping

Thursday, September 20, 2012

More items for Environmental Controls

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Wisconsin environmental authorities are seeking the public’s help in tracking down the source of illegal paint dumping in two northwestern counties.

 DNR

 DNR

Officials with Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources say they act quickly to clean up illegal dumps. In July, the agency used prison crews to clean up 2,000 pounds of trash dumped in Swan Lake Wildlife Area.

Paints, coatings and solvent wastes were dumped Sept. 4 or 5 on private and public lands in four towns, spokesmen for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources told reporters.

"The quantity that we got is of concern," Tom Krsnich, administrator of the DNR's environmental crimes investigation unit¸ told the Twin Cities Pioneer Press. "It's a lot more than you or I would have in our garages."

The one- and five-gallon containers were dumped in ditches, fields and woodlands. Some of the material dated to the 1990s, Krsnich told the newspaper.

"Most of them contained quite a bit [of] material, and a lot of it was quite dated," said Krsnich.

Quick Cleanup

The hazardous wastes posed a health risk to people, wildlife and groundwater, but DNR had the mess cleaned up within a day or two after it was discovered, Krsnich said. Crews had to remove soil from one of the locations.

Still, there may be more containers out there, and the culprit may face a charge of illegal hazardous waste disposal, Krsnich said.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Wisconsin DNR Tip Line at 1-800-TIP-WDNR (1-800-847-9367).  Calls are confidential.

   

Tagged categories: Environmental Protection; Hazardous waste; Paint disposal; Solvents

Comment from Mike McCloud, (9/21/2012, 10:33 AM)

It is unfortunate that regulation and cost makes small guys resort to this.


Comment from Chris Murphy, (9/22/2012, 9:35 AM)

How would fewer regulations change this? Would it be poured into storm sewers or set on fire? many states have free programs that allow consumers to dispose for free. Maybe laws in the future should allow small businesses to dispose up to a certain limit. Unfortunately those recovery programs usually incinerate as far as i know. While we are at it we can reduce the regs for nuclear waste too.


Comment from James Johnson, (9/24/2012, 10:44 AM)

When we were a coating application contractor we had many large corporate customers, such as Motorola and Intel. These firms all had hazardous material disposal programs in place, so every bid we provided to them we included a statement - Customer is to provide a container for waste and is responsible for all disposal. Since they had their programs in place this never once posed a problem to them and it greatly allievated disposal cost to us. They would provide us a dumpster or a location we could deliver materials to. We would deposit everything from spent abrasive to solvent and paint cans to dirty coveralls and rags. We explained to them that when they bought the paint they bought the can it came in, etc. and if we had to legally dispose of it we had to add the cost to our bid and with their in-house program they could legally comply cheaper than we could, so it was a cost savings to them. Invariably they understood that and agreed. This solution does not fit for all work, but it sure helped us stay legal.


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