Area collection events bring in 111,750 tires

Area collection events bring in 111,750 tires Free waste tire and battery collection events held May 5-6 for residents of Clay, Union, and Yankton counties netted an estimated 111,750 tires and 225 vehicle batteries, according to state officials.

South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Nettie H. Myers said the collection events were among many planned countywide waste tire and battery collections to be held this year as part of Governor Bill Janklow's Spruce Up South Dakota campaign to clean up South Dakota. County collections to date have netted more than 259,000 tires and 637 batteries.

"County officials did an outstanding job to make these collection events successful," said Myers. "They lined up the collection sites, provided necessary equipment and personnel, and did the necessary things at the local level to ensure the events went smoothly."

Waste tires and batteries were collected at several sites over the two-day collections. Totals collected include 35,000 tires and 125 batteries at the Yankton transfer station, 21,000 tires and 75 batteries at the Clay County Landfill near Vermillion, 5,500 tires at the city shop in North Sioux City, 4,300 tires at the Elk Point restricted use site, 6,250 tires and 25 batteries at the Beresford restricted use site, and 2,700 tires at Volin. In addition, six waste tire stockpiles totaling 37,200 waste tires were identified in the three counties.

A DENR contractor will haul the tires to its facility and process them into tire derived fuel. The tire derived fuel will then be taken to the Big Stone Power Plant and mixed with coal to produce electricity.

Old vehicle batteries can be recycled and are worth something if traded in when purchasing a new one or when taken to a local recycler. The state accepts old batteries but does not pay for them at the collection events.

"These collection events are an excellent opportunity for people to get both batteries and tires out of their garages and shops at the same time," said Myers. "The department is currently working with counties east of the Missouri River with plans to have all of eastern South Dakota cleaned up by December 31."

Funding for the waste tire portion of this cleanup is provided through $2.5 million in appropriations from the 1999 and 2000 Legislatures. The appropriations are funded in part by a tire fee paid during vehicle registration of 25 cents per tire up to a maximum of $1 per vehicle. The tire fee was established by the 1992 Legislature to help fund solid waste projects in South Dakota.

For more information on future county waste tire and battery collections, contact Keith Gestring with DENR's Water Resources Assistance Program at 605-773-4216 or visit the DENR website at: http://www.state.sd.us/denr/DFTA/WWFunding/tired.htm.

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