A new initiative has been created through a partnership between Recolight, the specialist WEEE compliance scheme for the lighting industry, and CoBRA (Community Bulb Recycling Alliance). Volunteers are being recruited across the country for an important new community initiative designed to encourage the recycling of low-energy light bulbs.
The initiative aims to form teams of ‘Bulb recycling champions’ up and down the UK who will help take responsibility for collecting used low-energy light bulbs for recycling in their local area.
These ‘Champions’ will be responsible for collecting the used light bulbs in specially designed collection containers which can be placed in community locations of their choice. The waste light bulbs will then be taken to a central collection facility by the volunteers, ready for collection and responsible recycling.
Commenting on the recycling scheme, Recolight CEO Nigel Harvey said “This is a really important community initiative to keep a hazardous waste stream out of landfill. Recycling low-energy light bulbs is often overlooked but it’s just as important as properly recycling a fridge or TV. Our specially designed collection containers will be visible in convenient community locations for the public to easily use.”
CoBRA creator Mark David Hatwood added “We hope that the low-energy light bulb collection scheme can prove to be as successful as the battery scheme which collected over 35 tonnes of batteries in just two years in one county alone. Anyone interested can sign up as a volunteer online at www.Recolight.CobraScheme.com and they will be sent a collection container and a transportation box. We’ll also sort out all the health and safety requirements for them.”
The Waste and Recycling Minister, Lord Henley, welcomed the partnership; “Energy efficient bulbs save energy, carbon and money but it is essential that people recycle them when they reach the end of their life. This initiative will enable people to take responsibility for light bulb recycling in their community and make the facilities much more widely available for householders to do so.”
The container, called the Bulbstore Mini, was specially designed by students at the Open University and has been independently tested. It features a unique internal ramp system which stops the bulbs knocking into each other and breaking. What’s more, the recycling container itself is re-usable and recyclable.
The CoBRA website has been designed to minimise the amount of paperwork volunteers are required to complete whilst ensuring that all the necessary health and safety regulations are complied with.
The scheme went live on 1st September and anyone interested in becoming a volunteer should email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0845 601 7749
The Government phase out of traditional incandescent light bulbs means that low-energy light bulbs will be sold in increasingly large quantities. Low-energy light bulbs have to be recycled properly because they contain a tiny amount of mercury. This is usually no more than 4mg and isn’t harmful to your health but can damage the environment in large quantities.