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Tons of electronics in recycling drive

Pulaski County recyclers collected 71 tons of electronic waste at the fall electronics recycling drive at Verizon Arena in North Little Rock, according to a news release.

The Regional Recycling and Waste Reduction District -- a state solid-waste district that operates only in Pulaski County -- reported collecting 14 tons more than it did last fall. This year's total was more than double the 30.5 tons collected during the fall 2016 collection.

Residents can still take electronics to five drop-off centers in the county, called Green Stations, according to the district's news release. The locations and operating hours can be found at MyDoRight.com.

Organizational leaders can call (844) 223-3190 or go to lreprinfo@escorecycling.com to schedule a drop-off of electronics recycling with eSCO, the district's electronics recycling partner. That service is available for businesses, schools, churches, government agencies and nonprofits that operate in Pulaski County, according to Regional Recycling's website.

Endangered beetle listed in permit plan

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service plans to issue a permit to American Electric Power that would allow for incidental take of an endangered species in the company's operations in three states, according to a Federal Register notice.

In Arkansas, the species is the American burying beetle, which is active only in the summer during its approximately yearlong life.

The company created a Habitat Conservation Plan, which also references species in other states.

According to the agency, the beetle is only known to have natural populations in Oklahoma, Arkansas, Rhode Island and Nebraska.

The plan concerns portions of Oklahoma, Texas and Arkansas. American Electric Power operates two coal plants in western Arkansas.

American Electric Power has agreed to several mitigation measures, according to the notice. They include limiting the use of vehicles, machinery or heavy equipment in the beetle's habitat; using best stormwater practices to avoid erosion; and limiting the use of artificial light in the beetle's habitat, among other things.

The beetles are nocturnal.

Panel to take a look at water proposal

The Arkansas Pollution Control and Ecology Commission at its monthly meeting Friday will consider finalizing a proposal to change water-quality standards in part of the state.

The proposal from the city of Huntsville is 5 years old but was amended in 2017 and received approval from the Legislature and governor in September.

Huntsville wants to increase the levels of minerals allowed in waters that the city's wastewater plant discharges into. The city's wastewater-discharge permit is on administrative hold -- meaning it expired years ago but remains active -- while the waters are out of compliance. Reducing minerals in its discharge and in the waters is cost-prohibitive, the city argues.

Minerals include chloride, total dissolved solids and sulfates.

If the proposal is approved, allowable-mineral levels will increase for portions of Town Branch, Holman Creek and War Eagle Creek. The current proposal does not raise the limits as much as the previous proposal would have.

More information can be accessed at https://bit.ly/2JbAiF0.

The proposal was opposed by several individuals and groups. Some argued that the study of alternatives was insufficient.

The commission also will consider a petition from the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality to eliminate a permitting procedure for oil and gas wells that the department says is duplicative of an Oil and Gas Commission permit.

State Desk on 10/23/2018

Print Headline: Electronics-recycling event yields 71 tons Tons of electronics in recycling drive Endangered beetle listed in permit plan Panel to take a look at water proposal

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