Recycle Sites for Cleaned Pesticide Containers

Clyde Ogg, coordinator of the Pesticide Safety Education Program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, helps load cleaned pesticide containers for transportation to a recycling facility. (File photo: Pesticide Safety Education Program)

Recycle Sites for Cleaned Pesticide Containers April 19, 2017

Twenty sites are participating in the annual statewide pesticide container recycling program, now in its 26th year. Coordinated by Nebraska Extension’s Pesticide Safety Education Program, the recycling program encourages agricultural producers to bring in clean containers that will be hauled to a recycling facility and ground up. The material is then reused in industry-approved products such as drain tile, underground utility conduit, highway sign posts, and other products.

“Many agricultural producers in the region have a sense of responsibility,” said John Wilson, Nebraska Extension educator based in Tekamah. “They feel recycling containers is the right thing to do.”

All containers brought in for the pesticide container recycling should be intact, clean, and dry. Farmers are encouraged to leave any container crushing to the pros. Nebraska’s program accepts 1- and 2.5-gallon plastic agricultural pesticide or crop oil containers; in some locations, 15-, 30- or 55-gallon drums are accepted. Containers must be pressure- or triple-rinsed and drained. Rinsate must be returned to the spray tank and used appropriately. Container caps, labels, booklets, and slipcover plastic labels should be removed and thrown away. Glued-on paper labels may be left on. Any rejected containers remain the property of the vehicle driver.

Ron Perkins is executive director of the Ag Container Recycling Council (ACRC) that contracts with the hauler, and oversees the national pesticide container recycling effort for its 44 member states. Perkins said in 2016 Nebraska collected 61,680 pounds of containers to be recycled. Nationally last year, ACRC contractors collected a record 11.1 million pounds of containers.

The program is funded by crop protection product manufacturers and distributors through the Virginia-based ACRC. 

“We’re in a time when profits are down and budgets are cut,” said PSEP coordinator Clyde Ogg. “These are the times when it’s probably most important to collaborate with these types of successful voluntary programs.”

Information about the program is at http://pested.unl.edu/recycling, and information on cleaning containers is in the Nebraska Extension NebGuide, Rinsing Pesticide Containers.

Nebraska sites this year include six locations open May-August and seven sites open year-round, with the remainder open on specific dates or by appointment.

Collection Sites

County collection sites are listed below by category and county. Sites accepting 15-, 30- and 55-gallon drums are noted.

Year-Round

  • Buffalo: Kearney Recycling Center, Kearney, Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cass: Wiles Bros. Fertilizer, Plattsmouth, call 402-298-8550 to schedule, accepts drums
  • Cuming: West Point Transfer Station, West Point, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to noon, 1-5 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., accepts drums.
  • Dawson: Country Partners Cooperative, Lexington, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums
  • Sarpy: Farmers Union Co-op, Gretna, call 402-332-3315
  • Scotts Bluff: Gering Landfill, Gering, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums
  • Washington: Washington County Recycling Center, Blair, Saturdays 8 a.m. to noon, accepts drums

May – August

  • Antelope: Central Valley Ag, Royal, accepts drums
  • Dawes: Solid Waste Association of Northwest Nebraska, Chadron, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums
  • Holt: Central Valley Ag, O’Neill, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums
  • Kearney: Cooperative Producers Inc., Minden, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Saunders: Reid’s Farmacy, Ashland, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Open Specific Days

  • Dakota: Central Valley Ag, South Sioux City, June and July, Wednesdays, 11 a.m. to noon, accepts drums
  • Dixon: Central Valley Ag, Newcastle, May 5, 19; June 2, 9; July 7, 14; Aug. 4, 11. 8 a.m. to noon
  • Lancaster: Midwest Farmers Cooperative, Waverly, June 23, accepts drums; Midwest Farmers Cooperative, Bennet, July 14, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums
  • Otoe: Midwest Farmers Co-op, Nebraska City, July 24-28, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepts drums

By Appointment Only

  • Burt: Tekamah Transfer Station, Tekamah, year-round by appointment, 402-374-2929
  • Custer: Custer County Recycling, Broken Bow, 308-870-0313, accepts drums
  • Lincoln: North Platte Transfer Station, North Platte, 308-535-6700, accepts drums