Sharps Compliance will promote Veolia’s Recyclepak, a lighting and battery ship-back recycling program, marketing this service to customers as a complement to Sharps’ line of unused medication and medical waste management services.
About 680 million mercury-containing lamps are discarded each year with about 25 percent to 30 percent being properly recycled in accordance with applicable state and federal regulations, Sharps says.
Virtually every component of a fluorescent lamp can be recycled, including metal end caps, lamp glass, and the mercury phosphor powder. When recycled properly, lamps are crushed and the materials are separated under a continuous vacuum filtration process. The glass, aluminum and mercury-bearing phosphor powder is captured safely and recycled for use in other products while the mercury phosphor powder is sent to a mercury retort for recovery of the mercury.
A program in Illinois that requires mercury thermostat manufacturers to collect and recycle their products isn’t preventing pollution, according to a study by the Natural Resources Defense Council and Clean Water Fund published earlier this year.