Fluorescent & Mercury Lamps
How many fluorescent and HID lamps do you use? How many do you dispose of each month or each year? What do you do now with spent or broken lamps?
Cumberland County residents may use the Universal Waste Depots throughout the county to dispose of fluorescent bulbs. Businesses can refer to www.newmoa.org/lamprecycle for a list of recyclers operating in the Northeast. Your recycler will explain how to properly store spent fluorescents and prepare them for shipping, as well as provide storage containers, transportation and a certificate of recycling. See the back for alternatives to recycling companies.
For businesses, designate a safe, dry storage area where the lamps won’t be broken. Make sure employees know whom to call when a lamp burns out, or what to do if one breaks. If your building generates small amounts of waste lamps, consider recycling through a “box program.” In this type of program you collect spent lamps in a pre-paid, labeled shipping container, purchased from a recycler or distributor. When the container is full, you simply mail it to the recycler. Note: Maine does not permit box program recycling. If your building generates large amounts of waste lamps, recyclers can make regular pick-ups. Also, consider re-lamping in bulk. This could save you money. Save recycling certificates and bills of lading or invoices that track your lamps, particularly if you do not work directly with a recycler.
Businesses are to store used lamps in Universal Waste-compliant containers. Mark each container with “Universal Waste – Lamps,” “Waste Lamps” or “Used Lamps,” and the date accumulation began. Get lamps to the recycler within one year. For Cumberland County residents, the Universal Waste Depots have containers for the fluorescent bulbs. They are housed there safely until picked up by a designated company.
Properly manage broken lamps. Clean up broken lamps promptly, placing shards and spilled powder in a puncture-resistant, sealed, plastic bag, or bucket. Wear gloves and use a damp cloth to sweep up the powder. Place all clean-up materials in a separate sealed container. Never vacuum lamps; it will simply spread the mercury vapor. You may recycle broken lamps at the same facility as your intact lamps. Do not throw them in the regular trash.
Include recycling costs in your annual budget. Let your tenants know you are recycling.
They’ll appreciate your concern for the environment! Encourage them to recycle too. And in NJ – IT’S THE LAW!
- How to Recycle Mercury Lamps in 8 Easy Steps
- Mercury Lamp Recycling in NJ (Informational Sheet & Vendor List)
- Home Depot Offers Recycling for Compact Fluorescent Bulbs