Have you ever imagined where we would be without fluorescent light bulbs? They help brighten our homes and offices. They play a significant role in keeping our homes on trend. Thanks to advancement in technology, the modern bulbs are energy efficient and also last for years before they burn out.

What do you do with your broken or dead fluorescent bulbs? A lot of people throw them in the trash. However, that’s not the right way to dispose of them. The correct approach is to recycle them safely.

People think that recycling is so demanding that they would rather toss recyclable waste into the trash. Your role, in this case, is not unachievable. You play your part, and leave the rest to a recycling facility.

Fluorescent bulb recycling

How Can You Help?

The method of recycling may vary depending on the number of fluorescent bulbs you have. Here is how to go about it.

  • If you have just a few of them in your house, locate the drop off site of household hazardous waste within your county.
  • If you are just a small company with a few fluorescent bulbs that await disposal, resources such as Earth911.org will come in handy. Use them to identify a CFL drop off point near you.
  • Individuals with hundreds of fluorescent bulbs may require the services of a professional recycler of hazardous waste. Get in touch with one and schedule an appropriate pick-up time. Some recyclers will give you a minimum number of light bulbs that they can collect from your business premises.
Fluorescent Bulb Recycling

Advantages of Light Bulb Recycling

Improper disposal translates to health problems

The last thing that you want is for mercury to end up in the landfills. It is harmful to our health. Unfortunately, it happens when we throw waste containing mercury, such as compact fluorescent lights, into the garbage.

Once mercury and phosphor make their way to the landfill, it seeps into the groundwater, leading to the creation of contaminated infiltration. This can affect our drinking supply. Fluorescent bulb recycling ensures proper and safe handling of the mercury and phosphor present and in turn, keep the human race healthy.

The world is running out of landfill space

This might sound far-fetched, but it is the truth on the ground. Increased industrialization leads to the production of more and more products with each passing day. People are always keen on upgrading their lives. This means that they are continuously buying new products and disposing of old items.

If you’ve been keen, you must have noticed that all these end up in the landfills. It is not hard to see that landfills are holding more garbage today than in the past. This means that we are running out of space and we must act in good time.

Recycling of fluorescent tubes will go a long way in saving this space. It doesn’t matter how much space you get to save. Appreciate every milestone, irrespective of the size. If you do the much you can, and someone else does the same, we will be heading in the right direction.

Help curb environmental pollution

The mercury, phosphor and other toxic elements present in the fluorescent bulbs leads to numerous other problems – besides being harmful to human health. The contaminated groundwater eventually makes its way to the rivers and other water bodies.

This means that:

  • Aquatic life is in danger. Its death is highly probable.
  • The soil where the hazardous waste sits, and the surrounding areas, are prone to pollution. Toxic elements interfere with their fertility and other characteristics.
  • Poorly disposed mercury interferes with the purity of air. Do I have to remind you that mercury is bad for your health?
    Save energy and cost of raw materials

Many people are unaware of the fact that raw materials used in the production of light bulbs can be recovered and used again. This way, the manufacturers recover some of the energy that went into making them. By recycling light bulbs, their parts receive a new life. This is so much better compared to piling garbage to a landfill, which will probably remain there for hundreds of years.

In as much as compact fluorescent light bulbs contain a small amount of mercury; people love them because of their energy efficiency. That’s the trade-off and we don’t have to give them up. We just have to be more careful with how we handle them (upon breakage) and thereafter.

Resources

https://www.hazardouswasteexperts.com/what-to-do-with-old-fluorescent-light-bulbs-a-recycling-and-disposal-guide/
https://www.epa.gov/cfl/recycling-and-disposal-cfls-and-other-bulbs-contain-mercury
https://www.productcare.org/about/blog/light-bulb-recycling-101/