The element mercury is a pollutant that is at or near the top of the U.S. EPA’s list of “Priority Chemicals,” a list of elements which pose the greatest risks to the environment and the public. As a result, in recent years DEQ's Office of Pollution Prevention has worked to promote and coordinate statewide pollution prevention efforts to reduce or eliminate the use of mercury and mercury-containing products and to collect unused elemental mercury for proper management and recycling. Virginia’s mercury reduction activities draw heavily upon the strengths of successful mercury-related programs in other states and cities. In furthering this initiative, DEQ has utilized existing partnerships with industry mentors, state and local government, and the dental industry and created new partnerships with federal government agencies, the hospital and pharmaceutical industry, and local school systems. For more information on Virginia’s mercury reduction activities please contact Steve Coe.
For information on cleaning up mercury spills, visit EPA's website at www.epa.gov/mercury/spills.