Washington Fluorescent Bulb Recycling Regulations

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Quick Facts:

  • Due to mercury concerns, recycling fluorescent bulbs is highly recommended by the Washington Dept. of Ecology and is required for many facilities throughout the state
  • Crushing fluorescent bulbs is allowed in Washington
  • Prepaid bulb recycling by mail is allowed in Washington

Recycling Options Available in Washington:

The Bulb Eater

Crushes fluorescent lamps of any size while removing mercury vapors. Reduces labor, recycling costs, and storage vs. packing lamps

BE_Build_ Money-Saving_2012

EasyPak Recycling Containers

Fill up containers with bulbs, ballasts, batteries, or e-waste at your own pace and mail back via prepaid shipping

Bulk Recycling Pickups

For larger amounts of bulbs, ballasts, batteries, or e-waste. Trucks come pick up waste at your location for recycling




Questions about recycling in your state? Contact us for more information.

Detailed Washington Fluorescent Bulb Recycling Regulations  

The stringency chart below provides examples of state regulations compared to the EPA regulations.
We strongly recommend that you discuss stringency with your primary state regulatory contact. This information should not be interpreted as definitive legal guidance. This document was produced in June 2004, and we do not guarantee its accuracy after that date, as state policies may change at any time.

("same" means the state policy is the same as the federal policy)

Confused about terminology (CESQG, UW, TCLP, etc.)? Refer to this glossary for help.

Jurisdiction Generator Exemption
Where can waste from CESQG go? Can the waste be declared non- hazardous, based on TCLP? Other stringency or exemptions?
Federal EPA Generators producing less than 100 kg (220 pounds) of hazardous waste (HW) or 1 kg acute HW in each month, including all HW generated. CESQGs are exempt from federal rules, but not exempt from liability (40 CFR 261.5) Waste may go to any Municipal Solid Waste Landfill (MSWLF) Wastes that test less than 0.2mg/l soluble mercury are not considered hazardous under federal rules. Crushing can only be done by generator (40 CFR 262.34); crushed waste that is not UW- must be managed as RCRA HW. Crushing not allowed within federal UWR, but may be within State UW regulations. No one may crush third-party lamps without treatment authorization [1]. No mobile treatment units.
Washington same Waste may go to MSWLF if there is no local ban on lamp disposal same same

State Regulatory Contacts

Primary Contact Title Agency Phone E-Mail
Robert Rieck Hazardous Waste Specialist; Technical assistance/regulations

Department of Ecology, Environmental Assessment Program

P.O. Box 47600

Olympia, WA 98504

(360) 407-6751  
Secondary Contact Title Phone Area of Responsibility
Maria Victoria Peeler Senior Environmental Specialist (360) 407-6704 Mercury policy issues
Mike Gallagher PBT (Persistent Bio accumulative/Toxic Substances) Coordinator (360) 407-6868
Tom Cusack Hazardous Waste Specialist (360) 407-6755 ext.6348(TEMP) Regulations
Ty Thomas Technical Assistance and Policy Unit Supervisor (360) 407-6758 General info
Susan McDonald King County Employee (206) 263-3059 King County
  Hazardous Substance Information Line 1-800-633-7585  
  Recycling Information Line 1-800-732-9253  

More Resources

Web Links and Informational Resources
Universal Waste Rule https://www.aircycle.com/local/pdf/WA-universal-waste-rule.pdf
Using Lamp Crushing Equipment https://www.aircycle.com/local/pdf/WA-using-lamp-crushing-equipment.pdf
Guidance Paper https://www.aircycle.com/local/pdf/washington-condexempt.pdf
Fact Sheet, Universal Waste Rule for Lamps http://www.ecy.wa.gov/pubs/0004020.pdf
King County Lamps Assistance Page http://www.govlink.org/hazwaste/business/fluor/
Lamps Page http://www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/hwtr/demodebris/pages2/demolights.html
Other Universal Waste Rule http://search.leg.wa.gov/wslwac/WAC%20173%20%20TITLE/WAC%...
Universal Waste Legislation http://apps.leg.wa.gov/wac/
Washington Department of Ecology Home Page http://www.ecy.wa.gov/


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