Covanta Environmental Solutions, a leading provider of environmental services to the healthcare sector and a wide range of other industries, has been awarded a contract for the New York Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) Pilot Pharmaceutical Take Back Program. The five-year program, which commences this month, allows for the installation of kiosks at 250 retail pharmacies, hospitals and long-term care facilities across New York State where consumers will be able to return unused and expired medications for safe and secure disposal.
“We are pleased to have the opportunity to be a part of New York State’s Pilot Drug Take Back Program,” said Paul Stauder, president of Covanta Environmental Solutions, in a statement. “Through our work with regulatory agencies, law enforcement and environmental advocates, we have become a resource for communities nationwide looking to properly and responsibly discard unwanted drugs. We are proud to provide this same service to the people of New York State. Preventing accidental poisonings and protecting the public from these drugs is of utmost importance, but also making sure our environment and water isn’t negatively impacted from improper disposal is essential as well. We commend New York State for making this important issue a priority.”
Covanta Environmental Solutions is responsible for the collection and disposal from participating locations. Collected medications will be processed at Covanta’s energy-from-waste facilities, which are uniquely suited for the DEC’s initiative as they have a long history of handling the secure destruction of pharmaceutical and controlled drug substance waste regulated by the Drug Enforcement Agency. Since 2010, Covanta has disposed of more than 4 million pounds of unused and expired medications and pharmaceuticals from take back programs.