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Safe Disposal of Pesticides

Avoid disposing of pesticides whenever possible:

  • Mix up only enough pesticide for the job.  
  • Use up small amounts of excess pesticides -- apply them according to the directions on the label.
  • If you cannot use it, ask your neighbors if they have a similar pest control problem and can use it up.
If any remaining pesticide cannot be used properly, safely dispose of pesticides to protect people, pets, and the environment:
  • Follow all disposal instructions on the pesticide label.
  • Check with your local solid waste management authority, environmental agency or health department to find out whether your community has a household hazardous waste collection program or a similar program for getting rid of unwanted, leftover pesticides.  These authorities can also inform you of any local requirements for pesticide waste disposal.  To identify your local solid waste agency,
    • Search the internet or look in the government section of your phone book under categories such as solid waste, public works, or garbage, trash or refuse collection for your town, city or county.
    • Contact Earth 911 at 1-800-CLEANUP or www.earth911.com.
Think before disposing of extra pesticides and containers:
  • Never reuse empty pesticide containers. Pesticide residues can contaminate the new contents and cause serious harm. 
  • Never pour pesticides down the sink, toilet, sewer, or street drain.
    • Many municipal drinking water and wastewater treatment systems are not equipped to remove all pesticides.
    • If pesticides reach waterways, they can harm fish, plants, and other living things. 

State and local pesticide disposal laws may be stricter than the federal requirements on the label. Check with your state or local agencies before disposing of extra pesticides.  

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