Used oil is generated from a variety of sources in both the commercial and residential sectors. Boats, cars, lawnmowers and other motorized equipment will at some point need to have their oil changed as part of its routine maintenance. The fact that oil is a commonly used substance does not mean it's harmless. The EPA states, "Used oil from one oil change can contaminate 1 million gallons of fresh water, the equivelint of a years' supply for 50 people."
What is MVA doing?
MVA currently recycles all used oil generated at its facilities, including the cooking oil used at the License Plate Café at the Glen Burnie branch. Used oil collected at the branches is stored onsite until it is transported to MVA Headquarters to be taken by a licensed contractor.
What can I do at my home to properly dispose of used oil?
The Maryland Used Motor Oil Recycling Program provides public outreach, public education brochures and collection sites for used oil. Since 1988 more than 10 million gallons of used motor oil have been collected in Maryland for recycling/proper disposal. You can take your used oil to a designated collection facility for recycling. Click here to find a used oil (and antifreeze) recycling collection facility in your area. Below are a few reminders regarding used oil.
- Never pour any type of oil, on the ground, down a sanitary drain, or down storm drains.
- If you change your own motor oil, only do it on impervious surfaces away from storm drains.
- Do not mix used oil with anything else such as water, antifreeze or gasoline. If it's mixed with other substances it cannot be recycled.
- Oil for recycling should be placed in a leak proof, reusable container with a tight fitting cap.
Sources: Maryland Environmental Service; Used Oil and Antifreeze Collection/Recycling Locations http://www.menv.com/usedoilcollectionlocations.shtml
U.S. EPA; Used Oil Management http://www.epa.gov/osw/conserve/materials/usedoil/