People are switching on to the benefits of lighting recycling to protect the environment and combat our growing waste challenges.
Millions of old light bulbs and lamps still end up in landfill every year, even though most lighting waste should be recycled.
There are a variety of benefits to recycling lighting waste, such as preventing hazardous materials like mercury from contaminating habitats and waterways.
When mercury-containing lights are disposed of into landfill, the mercury can leach into waterways and the ocean, where it can end up in the fish we eat.
For example, just one fluorescent tube can pollute 30,000 litres of water beyond a safe level of drinking.
Recycling lighting waste also helps recover non-renewable resources like aluminium, steel and copper to provide our manufacturers with the materials they need to make new things.
Here is our guide to recycling LED bulbs, smart lights and mercury-containing lamps:
How to recycle LED bulbs
LED, or light-emitting diode, bulbs are great for the environment because they generally use less energy and last longer than traditional bulbs.
You can recycle LEDs by checking with your council if they recycle these energy-efficient bulbs and where to drop them off.
If your council doesn’t accept LED lighting, you can also check the RecyclingNearYou website to see if there are other recycling options available in your area.
Keep in mind that if the bulb is broken, then it can’t be recycled. Wrap up broken bulbs in paper and place them into your general waste bin.
How to recycle smart lights
Smart lights are LED bulbs that are typically controlled by a smartphone app, which can remotely switch them on and off, adjust the brightness and other handy actions.
Smart lights can be recycled by taking them to dedicated collection points instead of putting them into the recycling bin.
You can find your closest drop off point by contacting your council or visiting the RecyclingNearYou website.
How to recycle mercury-containing lamps
Mercury-containing bulbs and lamps include small compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), fluorescent tubes and high intensity discharge (HID) lamps.
It’s incredibly important to recycle mercury-containing lamps because they are the single largest category of products with mercury, according to the Department of the Environment and Energy.
Households and small businesses can recycle old mercury-containing lamps by dropping them off at designated collection points provided by your local council.
Alternatively, you can visit RecyclingNearYou to find your nearest collection point.
Recycling lighting waste is easy
If your organisation is looking to recycle its lighting waste, our specialists can work closely with your team to develop the best lamp disposal and recycling solution for your business.
As Australia’s largest lighting and mercury recycler, Ecocycle can provide a tailored recycling service from the supply and pick-up of collection boxes to the provision of recycling certificates to workplaces across the country.
To find out more about our lighting waste services, fill out the form below or give us a call on 1300 32 62 92.