Manufacturer & Retailer Take Back Programs for Mercury-containing Products
The NWPSC supports the efforts of manufacturers and retailers to offer take back programs whereby used mercury-containing products are accepted from their customers and then the products are properly recycled, disposed or reused. Listed below are companies that take back their products and promote product stewardship principles for mercury-containing products.
Lowes accepts compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) for recycling in 1,700 US stores. Their permanent recycling centers offer a free, convenient and easy way for customers to recycle rechargeable batteries, cell phones, CFLs and plastic shopping bags. The recycling bins can be found near the entrance of Lowe's stores across the U.S. See their 2010 press release for more information.
Home Depot's nationwide take-back program allows customers to discard their expired CFLs at no charge. Customers can give expired and unbroken CFL bulbs to a store clerk behind the returns desk. The bulbs are managed by an environmental management company which coordinates CFL packaging, transportation and recycling. See their press release (PDF) for more information.
Home Depot Canada
On November 6, 2007, Home Depot began accepting compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) for recycling at all retail store locations in Canada. In partnership with Phillips Lighting and Fluorescent Recyclers Inc., Home Depot provides drop-off containers for customers to discard their expired CFLs at no charge. Customers can place expired CFLs in one of the plastic bags provided, seal the bag and deposit it into the display. Each store monitors the unit and once full, sends the expired CFLs to be recycled by Fluorescent Lamp Recyclers Inc. See their press release for more information.
IKEA's Free Take-Back Program allows customers to recycle compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) at all IKEA retail locations in the United States. IKEA provides recycling containers for customers to discard their expired CFLs at no charge.
Sylvania has a mail-in program which allows consumers to recycle their end-of-life compact fluorescent light (CFL) products. In order to recycle products through the company, customers must buy a RecyclePAK container online which they can fill with expired CFLs at home. Once the box is full, consumers can mail the package to the company.
Thermostat Recycling Corporation (TRC)
The Thermostat Recycling Corporation (TRC) accepts all brands of used, wall-mounted mercury-switch thermostats from homeowners through a partnership with household hazardous waste collection facilities. Homeowners can bring their mercury-containing thermostats to participating household hazardous waste (HHW) collection facilities. The HHW facilities pay a one time $25 fee for the collection bin which comes with postage-paid mailing labels. The facility ships the container to Honeywell's recycling facility in Minnesota and the bins are shipped back to the facility. Recycling costs are covered by the manufacturers. TRC, a not-for-profit corporation coordinated through the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA), facilitates the collection and recycling of all brands of used, wall-mounted mercury-switch thermostats. Thermostat manufacturers Honeywell International, General Electric, Nordyne, White Rogers, and Emerson Electric fund the TRC.