Take responsibility for chemicals

LIKE many of us, I was glued to the TV set watching the recent floods that rivalled 1974.

The disturbing images of livestock being washed downstream was one thing, but the other concern I had was the number of drums getting swept away as well.

I have no idea whether they were all full or empty, but they are not going to do any good with the direction they were heading.

We answered the call of drumMUSTER, with more than 20 million containers recycled so far.

This is an excellent effort from all concerned.

But I keep seeing an old 20 litre drum of cattle dip getting washed downstream in its bright yellow container.

It obviously had some liquid or crystallised product still in it, from its upright passage downstream, and I did not need the very visible skull and crossbones to tell me it was toxic and hazardous.

Obviously someone had stored this drum, maybe very consciously in a secure area.

However, now it was out and who knows what repercussions it may have in the future?

So what can you do?

Get on board with drumMUSTER and also add ChemClear to your list.

The numbers are staggering, and my old farming mate, Col Hoey, now drumMUSTER and ChemClear co-ordinator, provided me with some figures. More than 341,000 litres of unwanted ag and vet chemicals have been collected across Australia since 2003.

More than 112,000 litres were just from Queensland, with 53,000 litres in 2011 alone.

You can bet your socks it won't all be traditional glyphosate, that is for sure.

ChemClear is on again in either April or May for collection dates, depending on volumes as needed by the rural community.

We all need a few clean empty drums around, as they are very handy for many a job. But with the quantities we use these days, then recycling and responsible disposal becomes a must for all of us as product users.

I will take the liberty of adding the busy Col Hoey's phone number of 0428 964 576 or recommend the ChemClear website for all you technical gurus, so initial contact can be undertaken.

Topics:  drum muster environment

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