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California stores unite to recycle bulbs

A “Bring ‘Em Back” campaign in Alameda County invites consumers to return their used-up CFL bulbs and tubes to 18 participating hardware stores.

Among the participants are seven Orchard Supply Hardware locations, Dale Hardware, Pete’s Ace Hardware and a handful of others.

The Bring ‘Em Back program is supported by StopWaste.org. A fact sheet on the program’s website explains that when recycled properly, fluorescent bulbs result in lower overall mercury emissions, even though the bulbs contains small amounts of mercury vapor.

Widespread use of CFL bulbs “means that national mercury emissions will decrease, since the biggest source of airborne mercury in the U.S. is coal-burning power plants -- which provide much of the electricity used in the U.S.,” according to the website.


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