Battery recycling drop-off spots placed around Boyle County

Published 5:46 pm Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Boyle County Environmental Services, along with help from elementary students at Danville schools, have placed recycling cans for old batteries around Boyle County.

People may bring their used batteries to battery collection cans, which are being placed throughout the county. For now, cans are at the Boyle County Courthouse in the judge-executive’s office, Danville City Hall, and the Boyle County Recycling Center. They will be in other spots to be announced soon.

Boyle County Recycling Director Angela Muncy said that since batteries cannot be recycled normally with people’s paper and plastic, many people put batteries in their trash bins. However, batteries contain heavy metals, acids and other toxic substances that can leak into the environment.

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“As batteries corrode, their chemicals soak into soil and contaminate groundwater as well as surface water,” Muncy said. “Our ecosystems, which contain aquatic plants and animals, are compromised when filled with battery chemicals. This means that when we drink from tap water faucets, we could be ingesting dangerous metals.”

Since batteries are considered Hazardous Household Waste, Boyle County Solid Waste and Recycling sends them to the proper place for those types of materials to be put in constructed units that protect groundwater.

Students who are part of the Admiral Adventure Academy (AAA) helped make the battery collection cans. The AAA is an after-school program for kindergarten through 5th grade students at Danville Schools. The program is held at Toliver Elementary.

AAA Director Sandy Cain reached out to Muncy about partnering with Boyle County Environmental Services on an environmental project, and Muncy thought it would be a great opportunity to get kids and the public involved in recycling.

On March 6, AAA students took steel food cans from the cafeteria to re-use them as battery collection cans. Students put labels on the cans that say “Recycle Batteries.”

Collection cans will also be at the Boyle County Earth Day festival on April 22, which will be from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Boyle County Cooperative Extension Office pavilion.

At the festival, AAA students will talk to the public about the importance of proper battery disposal, and how people can get involved.

According to a press release from the Danville School district, students will also talk about their involvement with the Litterati app at the Earth Day festival. Litterati is an app used to track and analyze where litter is found, and other data about litter.

AAA students have been picking up litter and tracking it with the Litterati app. Cain said their goal is to create a challenge through the app to encourage members of the community to pick up litter as well.

“We want to at least try to create a challenge so that people in the city can jump on board, or businesses,” Cain said.

She said the kids have been excited to see results after picking up litter, and seeing how many pieces of litter they can remove from the environment.