Friday, May 30, 2008

Mercury in CFLs Is Problem to Recycle

To tell the truth, I have been using compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs) for about 5 years and I have never thought about the problem of throwing them away. I do not know why because I knew NOT to throw away the old-school fluorescent bulbs. Do not put CFLs in the trash as they contain mercury and if they are broken in a landfill, may leak mercury into groundwater.

Below is an article that explains the problems and gives some resources for dealing with CFLs.

StopGlobalWarming.org: Recycling options lag the compact fluorescent push

I was surprised there were not more options; so, I found a few more. If you know of any, please share in the comments.

Options
  • Search for recycle CFL on search engine to explore options in your area of the world.
  • Veolia Environmental Services sells RecyclePaks so that you may recycle CFLs through the mail.
  • Ace Hardware stores in Colorado and Illinois are drop off points for CFLs.
  • Bring your used CFLs to an IKEA store for free disposal.
  • Visit the EPA page on bulb disposal for information on recycling centers.
  • Earth911.org allows you to search by zip code for recycling centers.
  • Some larger towns have hazardous materials drop off centers.
  • Small towns may have a hazardous materials collection day.
Your Best Option is to Take Action

The next time you are making a purchase of CFLs, ask the management of the store where you buy them what you should do with them when they are used. I am going to call the local Wal-Mart, Ace Hardware, Lowe's and Home Depot and ask them if they have a recycling program. Call your council person, parish representative, county commissioner, representative or other elected official and ask what they are doing to help with the recycling of these items.

2 comments:

diy help said...

Wow, I've seriously never thought tht things tht I use everyday is giving such a problem in recycling. thnx for the advice, will do as much as I can to prevent polution.

Marc Klein said...

Thanks for this really useful information. I didn't knew that and always throw those CFL in the trash. Now I will take care of that. Thanks again for sharing this fact.

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