The Emporia City Commission established the Recycling Advisory Board in 1990 and mandated that the Board "improve public information on recycling." The Board originally consisted of four members named by the City Commission and one named by the Lyon County Commission. As the Board broadened its educational mandate, additional persons were drawn in. Currently working with the Board is the director of the Flint Hills Resource Conservation and Development Council, a representative of the Cooperative Extension Service and the Supervisor of the Emporia Sanitation Division
In 2005 the Recycling Advisory Board was blended into the new Natural Resources Advisory Board. Membership includes appointees from Chase and Lyon Counties and the city of Emporia to include no less than eight nor more than twelve members. In addition to speaking to school groups and to service organizations, members of the Board have taken on a number of projects.
The Natural Resources Advisory Board improves public information about Recycling, Arbor Day, and Effects of Storm Water Pollution. An educational commercial has been produced and airs on local access channels.
A BETTER PLACE FOR PHARMACY WASTE
EMPORIA—Residents with old and excess medications are no longer instructed to use flushing or drain-disposal as a disposal method. Experts from the U.S. Geological Survey have shown such actions can negatively impact the aquatic environment.
Justine Wallis, an intern for the Kansas State University Pollution Prevention Institute will spend the summer visiting retail pharmacies and medical clinics across Kansas, distributing posters that identify two alternative disposal methods for medication.
“Lyon county residents are encouraged to take their unneeded medications to the Lyon County Household Hazardous Waste Facility at 3000 West South Avenue, in Emporia,” Wallis said. “However, the facility cannot accept controlled substances or narcotics.”
If residents are unable to bring their pharmacy waste to the Lyon county facility, they may use an alternative disposal method. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has outlined an environmentally preferred disposal option for over-the-counter and prescription medications. Simply crush and dissolve pills in water, coffee or another liquid, then make a paste by adding coffee grounds or kitty litter. The paste should be put in a closed container, such as a sour cream tub, and thrown away in the trash, Wallis said.
The Pollution Prevention Institute at Kansas State University is funded in part by the Kansas Health Foundation. The institute focuses on sustainability promotion through environmental education.
To learn more about the program and view a demonstration video of the coffee ground/kitty litter method go to http://www.sbeap.org/content/page/PharmWasteOutreach.