Battery Recycling – January 2013

Gage and Karen Gallati have given countless hours preparing batteries for recycling.  For this program to continue, the Green Team needs your help:

• Place a small strip of masking tape on both ends of each battery. We’ll leave a roll of masking tape near the drop off box.

• Put each prepared battery in the collection box inside the double doors at the new entrance.  This prevents leaking of fluids and potential combustion in shipping.

We’ll deliver the batteries to Radio Shack, where they’ll be recycled.

Thank you for doing your part to keep batteries out of landfills!

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What happens when a battery is recycled?

Once a recycled battery has been sorted by its chemistry, it gets shipped to the appropriate facility where it will be processed and transformed. This ensures not only that the batteries are not entering the waste stream, but that valuable resources get reused. Call2Recycle has diverted over 70 million pounds of rechargeable batteries from the solid waste stream since 1996 and over 2 million pounds this year (2012), already.

Through processing, the heavy metals are removed and the battery components are recycled separately. In some cases, the recycled materials are able to close the loop in the recycling system by being used to create new batteries. In other cases, the heavy metals can be re-purposed for steel production in cars or for stainless steel items such as golf clubs, kitchen appliances and even silverware.

Why not throw it in the trash?

When a rechargeable battery ends up in a landfill, over time its heavy metal content will seep into and contaminate nearby groundwater, soil and surface water. Incinerated batteries are also contaminates. The ash released from smokestacks can contain heavy metal concentrates from the batteries.

When the heavy metals are introduced into the environment via air and water, they can easily find their way to the food chain. Heavy metals are toxic to animals or humans when they are ingested or inhaled and usually result in severe health problems.

Leah Blunt,

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