One of the things to consider when affecting rubbish removal in Strathfield and elsewhere in Sydney is how to properly dispose of light bulbs and globes.
When it comes to disposal and recycling, not all light globes are created equal, however there are companies that recycle some or all household lighting waste.
Fluorescent tubes and Compact Fluorescent Lamps are energy efficient methods of lighting; however they contain toxic mercury that must be kept out of the environment upon disposal. Mercury is a neurotoxin, which means it detrimentally affects the nervous systems of both animals and humans. While it is true that each individual lamp or tube contains only trace amounts of this element, millions of fluoro lamps and tubes discarded each year in Australia translate to a very large source of harmful mercury being placed in the environment. One fluorescent tube alone can pollute thirty thousand litres of water – so it’s easy to see why finding an alternative is so critically important. And right now, ninety six percent of globes wind up in landfill.
CMA Ecocycle is Australia’s only EPA approved mercury recycler, and as well as recovering mercury from used globes, they also recover and recycle aluminium, glass, and other metals. SUEZ (formerly SITA) also collects and recycles fluorescent lighting. Lamp Recyclers Australia also participates in the Fluorocycle program.
Tubes and globes are crushed and the materials are sorted into their component parts. Glass is recycled into glass wool which is used in home insulation materials. Aluminium from the ends of the tubes is reused for manufacturing other products. Phosphor powder is used to make fertilisers. Mercury is distilled from the phosphor powder and reused in dental amalgam.
Using energy efficient globes is ironically a great way to reduce the amount of mercury in the atmosphere; as most mercury in the atmosphere comes from burning fossil fuels to generate electricity. Recycling is by far the best way to dispose of these.
Never place globes or bulbs in household recycling bins as they can break.
As a LAST RESORT, wrap a bulb or globe in newspaper, seal in a plastic bag, and place in household rubbish.
- Linear fluorescent lamps
- HID lamps (used in street lighting)
- Neon tubes used in signage
- Compact fluorescent lamps used residentially
Older incandescent light globes should be disposed of with other rubbish in landfill; they are not toxic and the glass will not melt in recycling facilities. Incandescent bulbs are being phased out.
For rubbish removal in Strathfield and recycling, including disposal of fluorescent globes and tubes, call AA Adonis Rubbish Removal services.