Teacher, Students Work to Make Prescription Drug Disposal Sustainable
When ecology teacher Paul Ritter at the Pontiac Township High School in Pontiac, Illinois realized the U.S. is beginning to experience increasing amounts of unused or pharmaceuticals in the water supply he swung into action by working with his students to organize a local program to keep drugs out of the environment that may well serve as a model for others across the country.
To pull it off they’ve conducted hours of student-led research on the issue and partnered with local and corporate pharmacies, city officials, and local residents to ensure that no one in Pontiac has to choose between dumping their unused drugs down the drain or throwing them out with the trash. Both of which ensure those unused prescriptions will ultimately wind up in the water supply.
So folks in Pontiac can now bring their unused prescriptions back to their pharmacy for safe disposal. And Ritter, along with fellow teacher Eric Bohm, is working to help schools across America create their own Prescription Drug Reclamation Programs. And he indicated to us, here at TreeHugger, that what they really needs is a hand spreading the word. So perhaps a school near you may enjoy working to develop a similar program, which sounds like a great idea to me.