JACKSONVILLE - The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), along
with the Southern Waste Information eXchange, Inc. (SWIX) and Gander Mountain
Store of Jacksonville collected more than 600 pounds of old or unwanted
ammunition last weekend at an ammunitions collection event in Jacksonville. This
marked the fourth year DEP has co-sponsored the event, but the first time it was
held in the Jacksonville area.
“Improper disposal of ammunition has potential environmental, health and
safety risks,” said Mary Jean Yon, Director of DEP’s Division of Waste
Management. “This event made it easy for hunters and other residents to safely
remove potentially dangerous ammunition from their homes and prevent it from
ending up in Florida’s landfills.”
The proper disposal of old or unwanted ammunition can save lives by
preventing it from getting into the hands of young children, and can also help
protect the environment by keeping lead and other contaminants from seeping into
Gene Jones, Executive Director of SWIX, first proposed holding a pilot
collection event in 2005 in Tallahassee, after he was unable to find a place to
properly and safely dispose of some old ammunition that he had in his home.
Tallahassee has hosted events for four years.
“I realized that a mechanism is needed where people can dispose of old and
unwanted ammunition in an appropriate manner,” said Jones. “We have experienced
a lot of success over the last three years, collecting nearly 5,000 pounds of
old and/or unwanted ammunition just in Tallahassee alone. We were pleased to be
able to provide this collection event in the Jacksonville area with funding
assistance from DEP.”
Items that were collected from 42 participants include: 225 pounds of shotgun
shells, 354 pounds of bullets, 12 pounds of flares, and 16 pounds of gun powder
and black powder.
DEP and SWIX may be holding other ammunitions collection events around the
state later this year. For more information about the Ammunitions Collection
Events, contact SWIX at 1-800-441-7949 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is the state’s
principal environmental agency, created to protect, conserve and manage
Florida’s environment and natural resources. DEP enforces federal and state
environmental laws, protects Florida’s air and water quality, cleans up
pollution, regulates solid waste management, promotes pollution prevention and
acquires environmentally-sensitive lands for preservation. The agency also
maintains a statewide system of parks, trails and aquatic preserves.
For more information on solid waste disposal and recycling, please visit
DEP’s Web site at