JIS News

The 2005 National Used Lead Acid Battery Project got off to positive start on Labour Day with just under a hundred batteries collected islandwide.
The project aims to minimise the threat posed to public health and the environment from the improper disposal of used lead acid batteries.
According to Ann-Marie Rodriquez, Director of Enforcement and Compliance at the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA), the good start indicated the persons were buying into the objectives of the project.
“It was an excellent opportunity to introduce the project and to also sensitize the public about it,” she said.
“We had householders bringing in batteries to the depots as well as firms, which called and indicated that they had batteries to give in,” she added, while noting that St. Ann was the parish where the most batteries were collected.
Ms. Rodriquez however expressed some disappointment at the fact that not all locations for collection were ready in time for Labour Day.
“On Labour Day we had under 20 depots, which is less than we wanted. However, we will have up to 36 locations by the official launch in June,” she said.
The official launch of the project is scheduled for June 6, Solid Waste Management Day.
In the meantime, the Director advised persons seeking more information on the project to call the hotline: 754-5949.
Ms. Rodriquez indicated that after the launch, the NSWMA along with private sector distributors would continue the collection process. “They will then be taken to two depots in Kingston, where they will be packaged and prepared for export,” she informed.
The project, which spans a period of six months and includes a public education component, allows persons to dispose of the batteries in an environmentally sound manner. “The project allows persons to participate in terms of reducing the hazardous material that abounds in the form of lead found in batteries,” the Director said.
The types of batteries that will be collected include lead acid batteries used in automobiles, cell phone towers and in uninterrupted power supplies (UPS).
At the end of the project in November, it is expected that the Ministry will explore the option of establishing a sustainable system to deal with used lead acid batteries.

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