Waste Management

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment, specifically the Bureau of Waste Management or BWM, is responsible for implementing and enforcing solid and hazardous waste regulations in the state. The Pollution Prevention Institute, or PPI, works in various waste management and waste prevention areas including, food recovery, beneficial reuse and hazardous waste regulatory compliance.

Sustainable Materials Management

Sustainable Materials Management or SMM is an EPA-sponsored program that offers a systematic approach to using and reusing materials more productively over their entire life-cycle. Both the WasteWise and Food Recovery Challenge programs have now been replaced with SMM.

In October of 2021, PPI was awarded a two-year SMM grant project to work with industry, schools and communities, providing technical assistance for SMM identification and implementation. Is your school or business interested in assessing your waste streams and identifying ways you can reduce, reuse or recycle waste that now goes to the landfill? Email Jacob Larson for more information. These services are offered at no cost and are confidential.

According to the EPA, each year the United States wastes nearly 31% of its overall food supply, with food waste making up approximately 15 percent of what goes to our landfills. Dating back to 2012, PPI has worked with various industrial, institutional and community programs assisting entities with food waste prevention or diversion to hungry populations. 

Hazardous Waste Regulatory Compliance Assistance

The Pollution Prevention Institute, through the Small Business Environmental Assistance Program, or SBEAP, works primarily with hazardous waste regulations by providing free and confidential compliance assistance for Kansas small businesses that may need help understanding or identifying how the regulations apply to their facility. This service is administered through our hotline, email communication, on-site visits and the various tools posted below, as well as training events. In addition to dealing with hazardous waste regulations, SBEAP also assists with air quality permits, storage tanks regulations, and waste or stormwater permits. Check “Need Help” to request assistance. 

Prescription Drug and Sharps Waste

Prescription drug abuse and disposal are both a public and environmental health threat. According to the USDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, rates of drug overdose deaths in rural areas were surpassing the rates in urban areas. Improper disposal of medications, whether via sewers or landfills, leads to surface water contamination.

Sharps is a medical term for devices with sharp points or edges that can puncture or cut skin. They may be used to manage the medical conditions of people or their pets. Disposing of sharps improperly may present serious safety and public health risks, especially to solid waste and recycling workers.

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