The Increasing Demand For Fluorescent Lamps and Recycling Programs

Environmental Protection

An analysis of the lighting industry shows a significant shift from the use of incandescent bulbs to fluorescent bulbs. Incandescent bulbs use more fossil fuel energy, cost more and are less effective than fluorescent bulbs, which produce more lumens. Usage of fluorescent bulbs, however, is not entirely without risk because they contain mercury, a chemical compound that can have debilitating effects on humans upon prolonged exposure. The risk of leaving mercury deposits in landfills is high; therefore, recycling seems the most conscientious and environmentally safe recourse. Our analysis will show that a national fluorescent bulb recycling law not only helps the environment but promotes new business growth and job opportunities as well.

Because of mercury’s unique properties, the most effective way to dispose of wastes that contain the hazardous substance is by recycling. This requires the separation of the mercury waste from other compounds by a process called “screening.” When recycling fluorescent bulbs, the glass and metal end caps are removed from the waste and the resulting residue is then processed by a series of heating cycles to produce elemental mercury with a purity of 99.99 percent.

Recycling Lamps with Air Cycle

An Air Cycle lamp recycling program can help minimize recycling costs as well as risk of fines and liability. For large facilities, the Bulb Eater® lamp crusher can reduce lamp handling labor by up to 20 hours per 1,000 lamps, and minimizes lamp storage space requirements prior to pickup by up to 80%.

For small facilities, EasyPak™ mail-in containers simplify the recycling process with included prepaid shipping, optional automatic reordering, and online Certificates of Recycling. Learn more » Air Cycle lamp recycling solutions