Summer brings some of our favourite memory-making activities of the year – cooling off in the pool, camping or spending time in the garden.
For others, the warm, dry weather is the ideal time to pursue home improvement projects, before relaxing on our newly stained deck to admire our handiwork.
But while we wait all year for these summer pastimes and projects, too much sun isn’t the only risk they pose.
Many of those same summer activities can contribute to pollution and landfill fires if we’re not careful.
Household hazardous waste can be found in every home and includes batteries, paints, cleaners, motor oil, gasoline, pool chemicals, propane cylinders, pesticides, fertilizers and more.
These items should never be put in the garbage or curbside recycling, and never be poured down the drain or into the natural environment.
Why? Improper disposal of household hazardous waste can pollute waterways, harm fish and potentially spark landfill fires – a big concern during summer!
The good news is that residents in the capital region can safely dispose of these products for FREE at the Hartland Depot. For details, and additional drop-offs, visit www.crd.bc.ca/hhw.
Here are 6 common summer activities that pose a household hazardous waste risk, and how to mitigate it:
- Camping/Barbecuing – Safely store propane tanks and cylinders and properly dispose of them once you’re done. Learn more about where to take propane tanks and cylinders at www.myrecyclopedia.ca.
- E-biking – Regular maintenance is important for maintaining e-bike and their batteries. If an e-bike battery has reached its end oflife, it must be disposed of responsibly. Find a list of free drop-off locations at call2recycle.ca.
- Relaxing in the pool or hot tub – Maintaining pools and hot tubs involve chemicals that are safe when used properly, but can cause fires if disposed of incorrectly. Unused or expired chemicals can be dropped off at the Hartland Depot for free.
- Outdoor painting – Summer is perfect for outdoor painting, but be prepared for spills. Have absorbent materials nearby to prevent pollutants from washing into storm drains. Learn about painting without pollution and where leftover paint and paint cans can be recycled at www.myrecyclopedia.ca.
- Outdoor cleaning – Buy only what you need and safely store what you don’t use. Better yet, find environmentally friendly cleaning products in the Clean Green Cookbook.
- Gardening – Instead of using harsh pesticides and fertilizers, green up your garden with natural gardening techniques and native plants.
With these simple steps, we can enjoy a great summer and keep our environment clean, and workers and wildlife safe.
For more information on household hazardous waste and drop-off locations, visit www.crd.bc.ca/hhw.