Press Release

BALTIMORE, MD (June 21, 2005) – Maryland’s Used Oil Recycling Program has now collected over 10 million gallons of used oil and more than 500,000 gallons of anti-freeze. The milestone reached by the State of Maryland is equivalent to the 257,000 barrels of oil spilled during the Exxon Valdez incident in Alaska or 125 Olympic-sized swimming pools. And the widely used program now has 157 collection facilities across the state.

Unless you change your own motor oil, work on your own lawn equipment or boat you may have never heard of this valuable program that has been protecting Maryland’s waters for more than 17 years. It all started in 1988 with one collection facility in Annapolis, with the first gallon of used motor oil being collected from a private citizen.

“Maryland state government decided that water resources and the greater environment needed better protection from oil spills and decided to provide this service to the public,” said Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) Secretary Kendl P. Philbrick. “The amount of oil being collected proves that even with the growth of quick-change stores and extended life motor oils Maryland’s program provides a continued benefit for the environment.”

Maryland’s approach to used oil recycling is unique and a national model. Marylanders benefit from used oil collection tanks, advertisements and the recovery of the used oil for recycling. In other states private citizens must seek out their own means for proper disposal of their oil products. It has been found that in many other states, as well as Maryland’s past history, used oil is poured down storm drains or on to the ground polluting surface and groundwater.

Maryland’s Used Oil Recycling Program depends on volunteer facilities to provide the location for the recycling tank. Most of the tanks are located on local government property and are open for drop-off 24 hours a day. The program is very successful in recruiting and maintaining donor locations because the collection of oil is free and the equipment used is provided by the state.

For more information on Maryland’s Used Oil Recycling Program call (800) 633-6101, ext.3442 or visit the website