Fluorescent lamps come in many shapes and sizes: straight tubes, u- tubes, circular, and compact fluorescent (CFLs) are most common. Fluorescent lamps are highly energy efficient, using one quarter of the energy to produce the same amount of light, but they also contain mercury and should be handled and recycled safely. In Massachusetts, all fluorescent bulbs are required to be recycled by law.
Where can you recycle these materials? View this statewide listing of municipal and commercial sites that accept mercury-containing products for safe recycling. CET updated this MassDEP list in 2014, adding 95 communities and over 260 locations that accept these products. Funding for this project was provided by the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) and Covanta SEMASS. For more information on understanding mercury and handling it safely, visit this MassDEP page.
For more information about the affects of mercury, safe alternatives and procedures for spills, see our handout Mercury in the Environment (pdf).
The Center for EcoTechnology has been helping businesses, institutions and municipalities cost effectively find proper lamp recycling options for almost a decade. We are available to help your business effectively manage these materials at no charge through support from the National Electrical Manufacturers Association and Covanta Energy. Please contact our Green Business Support Specialist at 413-586-7350, ext. 240.