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Projects Database

Mercury Reduction Initiatives - Catch The Fever Exchange Program

Project Information

Award Amount:$108,100.00
Dollars Leveraged:$5,700.00
Start-End Dates:10/1/97-9/30/00
Description:Summary: The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) conducted a mercury P2 campaign directed at dental, healthcare, automotive, electrical switch/manufacturer, chemical users/manufacturers and utilities. This implemented recommendations from the Michigan Mercury Pollution Prevention (M2P2) Task Force Final Report (,1607,7-135-3585_4127_4175-14172--,00.html ). The M2P2 Task Force was a multi-stakeholder group with representatives from several state departments, industry, health care, environmental interest groups, trade associations and educational institutions.

Environmental Results/Products: The MDEQ, Environmental Assistance Division (EAD) staff led a state outreach campaign targeting schools, universities, medical facilities, industrial facilities and environmental and specialized jobs. MDEQ provided information about the dangers of mercury, proper disposal techniques, best management practices, mercury substitutes, and lists of drop-off centers, companies accepting elemental mercury, and mercury-free substitutes.

Staff conducted a mass mailing of pollution prevention materials to all Michigan Intermediate School Districts. The Science Teachers and Mercury Concern brochures were featured, along with a new publication titled The P2 Education Tool Box.

The EAD staff participated in six Mercury P2 in Schools workshops targeting science teachers and administrators. The EAD concurrently prepared a bill analysis for the state Senate, eliminating mercury in schools and providing testimony to the Michigan Legislature on the subject.

A customized mercury resource manual was developed as a resource for state environmental staff. All EAD field staff and MDEQ district offices received copies of this manual.

The MDEQ-Air Quality Division and the EAD staff participated on a Multi-Cultural Mercury Task Force whose mission was to provide mercury education and outreach information to Hispanic community. An investigation corroborated preliminary reports that elemental mercury was indeed being sold in botanicas (Mexican gift shops) in southeast and southwest Michigan. As a result, a bilingual mercury brochure was developed and distributed to interest organizations. Staff also gave presentations on the dangers of mercury at workshops and special functions.

The EAD trained 35 engineers to conduct mercury audits as part of their waste assessment training under the Retired Engineer Technical Assistance Program (RETAP). All the materials for the audits were provided to the Waste Reduction and Technology Transfer Foundation.

Expansion of Michigan’s pilot dairy farm mercury manometer trade-in program resulted in the elimination and recovery of an additional 80 mercury dairy manometers. The MDEQ conducted a pilot Catch the Fever mercury fever thermometer exchange for two departments in state government (the Michigan Department of Community Health and the MDEQ). As a result of this effort, a total of 640 mercury thermometers were recovered, as well as 7 pounds of elemental mercury, 14 mercury lab thermometers and 3 mercury thermostats. This pilot effort served as a template for statewide program expansion.

The following publications were updated and reprinted:
• Science Teachers and Mercury Concern Brochure
• Dairy Mercury Manometer Brochure
• Mercury Spill Contractors List
• Lists of Companies Accepting Hg


Funding Organizations

Below is a list of organizations with individual contacts that are funding this project.

U.S. EPA Great Lakes National Program Office - Primary Contact

77 W Jackson Blvd
Chicago, Illinois 60604
There are no individuals in this organization
associated with this project.

Organizations Receiving Funding

Below is a list of organizations with individual contacts that are receiving funding for this project.

Michigan Department of Environmental Quality - Primary Contact

Environmental Science & Services Division
PO Box 30457
Lansing, Michigan 30457
p: 800-662-9278
Individual Contacts
  • Karen Best
  • Steven Kratzer (

Associated Organizations

Below is a list of associated organizations that are NOT giving or receiving funding for this project.

MDEQ-Air Quality Division - Partner

P.O. Box 30260
Lansing, Michigan 48909
p: (517) 373-7023
f: (517) 373-1265

Michigan Department of Community Health - Partner

Capitol View Building
201 Townsend Street
Lansing, Michigan 48913
p: 517-373-3740

Waste Reduction and Technology Transfer Foundation - Partner

501 Little Rock Avenue
Sheffield, Alabama 35660
p: 800-516-6358
f: 256-314-1751


Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable (GLRPPR)
One East Hazelwood Drive Champaign, IL 61820
(217) 333-8940

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