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County Helping Businesses Recycle Fluorescent Lights

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fluorescent bulbs

October 19, 2010

Local small businesses can get free “mail-back” recycling kits to help them legally recycle old fluorescent lamps, thanks to the Department of Environmental Health and a federal stimulus grant.

“The County strives to be business friendly and we want to make it easy for businesses to recycle,” said Supervisor Greg Cox. “This is also a good way to people to properly dispose of fluorescent lights and other electronic waste.”

Fluorescent lights and Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFLs) help businesses cut electrical costs and be more environmentally-friendly. But it’s illegal in California to toss old fluorescent lights out in the regular trash because they contain small amounts of mercury, a toxic metal that can harm people and the environment unless it is legally recycled.

To help local small businesses recycle properly, the San Diego County Department of Environmental Health is making up to 2,200 postage-paid “mail-back” recycling kits available. Each kit can hold up to 75 fluorescent bulbs or tubes, and businesses can simply mail the kit back free of charge to let the County recycle the lights. Businesses are allowed two kits apiece, while the supplies last. To qualify, businesses must be located within San Diego County.

The County Environmental Health Department purchased the recycling kits with federal stimulus funds awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy to the County through an Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant. For a complete list of the County’s stimulus-funded projects, please visit

To learn more about how your business can take part view this information sheet (PDF)  or contact Karilyn Merlos at (858) 495-5799, or

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