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News Releases from Region 09

Super Typhoon Yutu Response Update 12/10/18

New EPA “story map” with response activity data now online

12/10/2018
Contact Information: 
Dean Higuchi (higuchi.dean@epa.gov)
808-541-2711

Note: Advisory was issued on Dec. 10 CNMI Time

HONOLULU – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) continues to assess and remove oil and hazardous waste on Saipan and Tinian to reduce risks to public health and the environment following Super Typhoon Yutu. In addition, CNMI agencies are conducting curbside pickup of hazardous materials from residential properties, and public drop-off locations also continue to be open for items such as paints, solvents, herbicides, e-waste, appliances and other goods.

EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Mike Stoker will visit Saipan later this week to meet with local officials and tour typhoon response operations.

Along with EPA and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), other disaster response agencies working with EPA include the Commonwealth Utilities Corp. (CUC), CNMI Bureau of Environmental and Coastal Quality (BECQ) and the Mayor’s Offices of Saipan and Tinian.

EPA’s activities include collecting, testing, shipping and disposing of hazardous materials such as damaged electric transformers, household hazardous waste (HHW), electronic waste (e-waste) and white goods such as refrigerators and air conditioners. In addition, EPA is helping local agencies sample drinking water and providing technical assistance for wastewater operations and water supply restoration.

NEW – An online “story map” at www.epa.gov/typhoonyuturesponse provides the status of EPA’s response actions as well as maps and photos.

Household Hazardous Waste Curbside Pickup and Drop-offs

Curbside HHW Pickup: The pickup of household hazardous waste (paint, solvents, pesticides, other chemicals), appliances and electronics will continue on Saipan. Please place your items curbside and keep separate from green waste, tin and construction materials.  The last day to put materials out for pickup on Saipan is December 24, so please put your items out soon. Please note that items will be picked up by village, with crews coming to each area starting from the south and ending in the north, repeating these pickups for a total of three sweeps of the island.  Curbside collection has been completed on Tinian. 

Drop-off Locations - SAIPAN:

  • Lower Base Transfer Station: Now until January 15, 7:30 a.m. to 4:50 p.m., 7 days a week.
  • As Gonno Staging Area (Kobler Airfield, near Tottottville): Now until January 15, 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., 7 days a week.

For more information on household hazardous waste, electronic waste or white goods disposal, please contact the CNMI BECQ at 664-8500.

Status of EPA Response Actions – as of 12/8/2018

  • Downed Transformers and Household Hazardous Waste/E-Waste: EPA is working with CUC on transformer collection. To date, 640 transformers have been collected on Saipan and 171 on Tinian. EPA is collecting and removing household hazardous waste such as paints, cleaners, solvents, oils, batteries, herbicides, pesticides and e-waste, and has so far collected a total of 8,535 items at the HHW collection areas and 8,627 items from facilities such as schools and public buildings on Saipan and Tinian.

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