DHEC, DNR and PalmettoPride Announce Statewide Initiative to Target Illegal Tire Dumping

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Illegal tire dumps are the target of a new statewide initiative launched today by the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), PalmettoPride and the S.C. Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR).

“While advancements in the management of scrap tires continues, we recognize that there is more to be done,” said DHEC Environmental Affairs Director Myra Reece.  “The ‘See It, Report It’ campaign allows us to share information and resources to reduce illegal tire dumping in South Carolina by encouraging our residents to help us identify these sites so that we can take action.”

Unveiled at the Eighth Annual Scrap Tire Recycling Conference in Greenville, S.C., the “See It, Report It” campaign is aimed at eliminating unpermitted tire stockpiles, which can pose both public health and environmental risks. The campaign encourages residents to quickly and anonymously report tire dumps by calling the Litter Buster Hotline at 1-877-7 LITTER or using the “Report a Litterbug” option at www.palmettopride.org.

Most waste tires are properly disposed of by permitted facilities and are frequently used as a substitute for gravel or other aggregates in septic tank drain fields or other drainage applications. Tires also can be recycled into rubberized playground surfaces, landscaping mulch, truck bed mats and other products. However, despite the resources available for proper tire disposal, illegal dump sites occur around the state.

“The ‘See It, Report It’ campaign is part of a comprehensive initiative to improve waste tire management in South Carolina,” said Executive Director of PalmettoPride Sarah Lyles. “From our perspective, changing behaviors that lead to illegal dumping begins with awareness and education. This campaign brings all the stakeholders on board in a joint mission: to encourage proper disposal practices.”

Unless a site’s owner is properly permitted by DHEC as a waste tire facility, a stockpile of tires is illegal. Residents should never let someone dump tires on their property, as landowners could be held liable for associated cleanup costs.

“The S.C. Department of Natural Resources has a long-standing commitment to conservation that includes enforcing the law when individuals threaten or harm the lands, waterways and wildlife we strive to protect,” said State Litter Coordinator Valerie Shannon. “The ‘See It Report It’ campaign and SCDNR law enforcement surveillance efforts will increase awareness about preserving our state’s natural resources.”

For more information about waste tires in South Carolina, visit www.scdhec.gov/tires or call DHEC’s Office of Solid Waste Reduction and Recycling at 1-800-768-7348.

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