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Filtering drugs out of our water

Alex Doty • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:59 AM

Efforts are being taken to collect prescription medications and make sure that the chemicals that are in these drugs don’t end up in the local water supply.

Kay Nedderman, president of Clean-up Our River Environment, said her group has taken up a drive to place boxes around the community to collect old drugs.

“The latest thing that we’ve done is at the (local police stations), we have a mailbox where people can drop off their unused medications,” she said.

Nedderman said the boxes are at the Grand Haven Department of Public Safety office 24 hours a day and at the Spring Lake/Ferrysburg Police Department during normal business hours. People can anonymously drop off their old medications at these locations.

The drugs are eventually taken to an incinerator in Grand Rapids for disposal.

Nedderman said it is important for people to dispose of their medications the proper way, instead of putting them in the garbage or flush them down the toilet.

“Our water intake is right off of the pier,” the Grand Haven woman said. “If people dump it in the toilet, it will go down the river and into the Great Lakes.”

Nedderman said that means a great risk of the chemicals from the drugs entering the local water system. It also poses a risk to aquatic life.

“It is a big deal and I don’t think that a lot of people realize it,” she said.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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