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Home Depot launches national CFL recycling initiative

Home Depot has launched a national consumer compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulb recycling program. This free service, available at all 1,973 Home Depot locations, is by far the largest of its kind by a retailer in the United States. Home Depot Canada launched a CFL recycling program in November 2007, and IKEA offers a similar program in its stores.

Under the initiative, customers can bring expired, unbroken CFL bulbs to any Home Depot location and give them to the store associate behind the returns desk. The bulbs will then be managed by an environmental management company that will coordinate CFL packaging, transportation and recycling to maximize safety and ensure environmental compliance.

CFLs are hailed for their dramatic energy conservation properties but contain small amounts of mercury that require special disposal methods.

“The CFL recycling program is another example of how the Home Depot is empowering customers to help make a difference in their own homes and have less of an impact on the environment,” said Ron Jarvis, Home Depot’s senior vp-environmental innovation.”

(To listen to a recent podcast with Jarvis, click here.)

“With more than 75 percent of households located within 10 miles of a Home Depot store, this program is the first national solution to providing Americans with a convenient way to recycle CFLs.” Jarvis added.

In addition to the CFL recycling program, Home Depot has also launched an in-store energy conservation program to switch light fixture showrooms in U.S. stores from incandescent bulbs to CFLs by fall 2008. The company, which sold more than 75 million CFLs in 2007, said this would save $16 million annually in energy costs.

The CFL recycling program is an extension of Home Depot’s Eco Options program. Eco Options, launched in April 2007, is a classification that allows customers to easily identify products that have less of an impact on the environment.

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