Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Fluorescent Lamp Recycling – Not a Common Act for Consumers

With incandescent lamps out and energy-efficient fluorescent lamps and CFLs in, it is important for consumers to understand all factors of using them; from the initial purchase to proper disposal procedures. Fluorescent lamps and CFLs are a more sustainable lighting option, providing four to six times more efficiency than their incandescent counterparts and emitting about the same amount of visible light, all while offering longer working life and saving significant energy costs. Although incandescent light bulbs may seem like the cheaper option at the counter, consumers will actually save money on CFLs in the long run since they last an estimated 8 to 15 times as long as an incandescent.

When it comes to proper disposal, we are falling short. The EPA estimates recycling rates of fluorescent lamps at only 20 to 25 percent, leaving the majority to be placed in dumpsters and eventually end up in landfills. The consumer recycling rate has been estimated to be even lower—possibly at less than 2 percent. Due to their mercury content, this is a serious concern for the health of not only our environment but also for ourselves.

To learn about recycling options, read our post: How Can You Easily Recycle Used Fluorescent Bulbs?

Brad Buscher
Chairman and CEO
VaporLok Products LLC

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