Recycling Compact Fluorescents – It’s getting easier!

June 24, 2008 at 9:25 pm 1 comment

Compact fluorescent bulbs have been on everyone’s short list of an easy way to shave dollars off of their electric bill.  However there is this small problem with them, they contain mercury and known environmental problem.

We have all supposed to have been recycling them and we haven’t.  The levels of mercury in the environment have been slowly increasing and the bulbs are the obvious suspects along with their larger cousins. Also note that coal fired power plants also put forth a significant amount of this substance also. Here is what the EPA is saying about it: http://www.epa.gov/bulbrecycling/

Now there are starting to be lots of options to recycle the smaller bulbs and even a few for the larger tubes.  The first option I would like to bring to your attention made the Building magazine top 100 products list. It is a pre-paid recycling kit from Veolia Environmental Services (http://veoliaes-ts.com/recyclepak).  This is pretty exciting not from an individual perspective but what is possible when you talk about sponsored programs.  Here is an article about one sponsored by the Hawaiian Electric Co. (http://starbulletin.com/2008/03/20/news/story12.html).  This kind of service facilitates the kind of commercial sponsorship that we are all familiar with.

Another company that has the option of pre-paid recycling as well as more traditional equipment and programs is AirCycle: http://www.aircycle.com/#08197452547246975281 This company offers everything from bulk pick ups to the pre-paid programs mentioned earlier.  Especially if you have a large facility where you might have a large amount fo traditional bulbs to recycle, this company’s Bulb Eater product is one you should consider.

Now for some time IKEA, the world’s largest home furnishings retailer has had a take back program to CFL’s in every store. (http://www.ikea.com/ms/en_US/about_ikea/social_environmental/environment.html).  This si something that Walmart sponsors periodically through out the country and that Home Depot is now starting! (http://www6.homedepot.com/ecooptions/stage/pdf/cfl_recycle.pdf)

Let’s all start recycling before some government agency decides to put a deposit on these bulbs like a soda bottle to encourge our correct behavior.

As always I thank you for your time and interest. Please take the time to Digg, Stumble Upon or add to the other social network of your choice to help me spread the word about these issues. Please forward any questions or suggestions to: askthefm@gmail.com

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Entry filed under: Recycling. Tags: , , .

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