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Qld farmers commended for chemical waste safety

Property owners throughout Queensland proved their worth as land heroes when they surrendered a whopping 28 tonnes of unwanted farm chemicals for safe destruction in the recent six-week state wide collection.

Agsafe’s ChemClear program collects and disposes of unwanted products that display the drumMUSTER logo on the chemical label for free, during set collection times in each state and territory. All other chemicals attract a disposal fee.

For 81-year-old grazier Glen Keal of Blanchview, near Gatton, it was a relief to hand over a 10kg tin of arsenic he recalls his father using to treat tree stumps.

“It’s been in the shed ever since I can remember and this was the only legal way to get rid of it … I’ve got great-great grandchildren so getting it off the farm makes the place safer, and you’ve got to be environmentally responsible these days,” said Glen.

ChemClear program manager, Lisa Nixon, said 276 landholders from Queensland clearly demonstrated their commitment to safe farm practices, by making the effort to rid their farms of unwanted waste products.

“Farmers are continually working to meet their food quality program requirements and the high food safety standards of buyers, exporters and Australian families,” she said.

“The full extent of the collection was only made possible with the help of the Queensland State Government and it’s thanks to their help, 104 chemical users were able to afford the safe disposal of nine tonnes of historic chemicals”.

The Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage provided a 50 per cent subsidy to help farmers pay for safe disposal of unwanted chemicals that could not be disposed of for free.

Since 2006, 207 tonnes of unwanted agvet products have been collected in Queensland, with the national total at 622 tonnes.