Here's something even less sexy than low-emissions cows.
Fluorescent lights are wonderful things, especially compared to their 5-times-more-heat-than-light-generating, power-sucking brethern. But they have their disadvantages as well. Particularly, they contain small amounts of mercury, which is 1. Toxic, and 2. Requires mining.
Some manufacturers are producing low-mercury fluorescent lamps and we applaud them. But we've been hoping that someone was going to see all this wasted mercury as the opportunity it is.
Mercury Waste Solutions provides prepaid shipping containers (FedEx and UPS) for the safe collection and shipping of fluorescent tubes, batteries, and other mercury containing objects for recycling. They claim to be able to recover 99.99% of the mercury with their processing of the waste.
Unfortunately, this is currently corporate-, and institutional-level stuff. The shipping containers are for large numbers of lamps (dozens or more) and are not exactly inexpensive. On your own, you wouldn't fill one up for a very long time. But your neighborhood might be able to, and certainly city-wide recycling programs could be created. We just love to see how quickly solutions can be created after a problem is recognized.
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