Recycling is not only our environmental responsibility, it's the law.
Violations can subject you and your organization to fines, penalties, other unnecessary costs and embarrassment. Our program is sustainable, affordable and ensures your compliance with all federal, state and local laws governing Universal Waste.
Avoid Financial Risks
A company can be fined up to $25,000 per occurrence for throwing lamps in the trash. Recycling is a small price to pay for a safer business and cleaner environment.
Landfills and the Environment
Fluorescent and high intensity discharge (HID) lamps contain mercury. Improper disposal releases mercury into our air, water and soil, harming human health and wildlife. The mercury contained within the lamp and is not exposed to the environment unless the lamp is broken at the end of its life. The release of mercury is most likely to occur when the lamp is thrown in a garbage truck or a dumpster. Mercury is a poison to humans, delivering a toxic effect on the central nervous system when absorbed. It's estimated that 85,000 newborns per year are exposed and suffer cognitive damage due to mercury.
Increasingly, landfills and waste haulers refuse to accept fluorescent lamps due to limits imposed on them with respect to mercury wastes. Regardless of your local government regulations, these bulbs are harmful to the environment, as they contain small amounts of mercury and the EPA recommends recycling them.
Lighting manufacturers, through their trade association, National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) developed lamprecycle.org to provide a one-stop source of information about recycling lamps (the term used in the lighting industry to refer to all types of light bulbs).
Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), and other energy-efficient lighting such as linear fluorescent and high intensity discharge (HID) lamps contain a very small amount of mercury, an element essential to achieving energy savings. While these lamps help consumers and businesses cut their lighting energy usage and reduce energy costs, it is important that any product containing mercury be properly managed when it becomes waste to protect public health and the environment.
Easy and convenient options exist for both businesses and consumers to recycle waste from mercury-containing lamps. It is estimated that businesses already recycle more than 30 percent of their waste lamps annually and consumers are embracing lamp recycling as they switch to more efficient lighting technologies.
MORE REASONS TO RECYCLE
- Legislation, fines and penalties. Don't let lack of knowledge cost your business money.
- The Environmental Protection Agency's Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) classifies lamps containing mercury as universal waste, making lamp recycling mandatory in all 50 states.
Recycling 1 million laptops saves the energy equivalent to the electricity used by 3,657 U.S. homes in a year.
For every 1 million cell phones that are recycled, 35,274 lbs of copper, 772 lbs of silver, 75 lbs of gold, and 33 lbs of palladium can be recovered.
E-waste represents 2% of America's trash in landfills, but it equals 70% of overall toxic waste. The extreme amount of lead in electronics alone causes damage in the central and peripheral nervous systems, the blood and the kidneys.