Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, Google partner to protect water quality from unwanted pharmaceuticals

Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, Google partner to protect water quality from unwanted pharmaceuticals

April 23rd, 2019 by Staff Report in Breaking News

NASHVILLE — The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation on Tuesday announced a partnership with Google Maps to help Tennesseans identify nearby locations to safely dispose of unwanted pharmaceuticals.

TDEC has worked to make available 334 permanent collection bins for expired, unused or unwanted household medications across all 95 Tennessee counties, according to a news release. Tennesseans now can type "drug drop off near me" or "medication disposal near me" to see those locations on Google Maps.

The department " ... is at its best when it is partnering with other public and private organizations to find solutions to enhance services for Tennesseans," TDEC Commissioner David Salyers said in a statement. "We appreciate this new partnership with Google and our shared commitment to keeping drugs out of our waterways and out of the wrong hands."

Medications accepted in the bins include liquid prescriptions, ointments, pills, over-the-counter medications and pet medications. For a map of bin locations statewide, visit http://tdeconline.tn.gov/rxtakeback/.

Flushing medications or draining drugs down a sink allows chemicals to enter streams or groundwater, where they can affect drinking water and stream ecosystems. Wastewater treatment plants are not designed to adequately remove chemicals found in drugs.