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Friday, May 27, 2016

Getting rid of “hard-to-dispose-of” wastes could get a little easier

Senate passes Sosnowski’s Household Hazardous Waste Management Act

The Rhode Island Senate passed legislation sponsored by Sen. V. Susan Sosnowski (D-Dist. 37, New Shoreham, South Kingstown) that would create a system for disposal of hazardous household materials.

The bill (2016-S 2526A) would establish programs to aid in the monitoring, tracking, reuse, recycling, and proper disposal of hard-to- dispose materials.

“Rhode Islanders are increasingly using hard-to-dispose hazardous materials,” said Senator Sosnowski, chairwoman of the Senate Environment and Agriculture Committee. 

“The proliferation and accumulation of these materials is a public health hazard and seriously impedes our efforts to maintain a healthy and clean environment. This legislation will bring about the effective control, recovery, and recycling of hard-to-dispose material.”

EDITOR'S NOTE: this legislation, while meritorious, does NOT address the growing problem of electronic waste. Charlestown, like many other municipalities, no longer provides a drop off for e-waste, much of which is loaded with potentially hazardous materials.

The legislation would authorize the Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation to conduct a permanent and continuous program to control and remove hard-to-dispose materials and to recover and recycle waste materials related to hard-to-dispose material.

“This bill will also create jobs in hard-to-dispose material cleanup in small, private recycling centers,” said Senator Sosnowski. “The intent of this bill is to coordinate existing recycling and removal efforts, and to aid private and public efforts in the proper disposal, recycling, reuse, and reduction of hard-to-dispose material.”

The legislation, which is cosponsored by Senators Cynthia A. Coyne (D-Dist. 32, Barrington, Bristol, East Providence), Gayle L. Goldin (D-Dist. 3, Providence), William A. Walaska (D-Dist. 30, Warwick) and Frank S. Lombardo III (D-Dist. 25, Johnston), now heads to the House of Representatives.