Record Number of Recyclable Batteries Collected in 2006
The Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation (RBRC), a nonprofit, public-service organization, recently released its year-end data for 2006. Thanks to the organization’s Call2Recycle program, more than 5.6 million pounds of rechargeable batteries were collected in 2006 throughout the United States and Canada.
Call2Recycle, a comprehensive, nationwide rechargeable battery and cell-phone recycling program, provides a convenient way to collect and recycle used rechargeable batteries found in products such as cordless power tools, two-way radios, cordless or cellular phones, laptop computers, digital cameras, and camcorders.
The organization’s successful year can be attributed in part to the increase in participation among national retailers, businesses, communities, and licensee recycling programs. In 2006, retailer participation increased 18 percent, while community and public-agency participation increased 23 percent.
Participation by businesses had the greatest increase of 48 percent. National participating retailers include Best Buy, Circuit City, The Home Depot, Lowe’s, RadioShack, Sears, Target, and many others.
“We are pleased that our program continues to grow and welcome the participation of many new key partners,” said Ralph Millard, Executive Vice President, RBRC. “As consumers’ reliance on portable, cordless electronic products continues to grow, so does the need to recycle the batteries that power them, which is RBRC’s mission.”
The increase in collection numbers can also be attributed to recent efforts by RBRC, including:
* The signing of new community, business and retail partners. Since January, RBRC has signed on more than 1,000 new communities and public agencies, and over 1,200 new business partners, in addition to numerous new retail partners such as Duane Reade, Sony Style Stores, Circuit City, Rite Aid, California-based Kragen Auto Parts and Fry’s Electronics.
* California’s “Rechargeable Battery Recycling Act of 2006.” RBRC supported California’s recently passed “Rechargeable Battery Recycling Act of 2006,” requiring retailers that sell rechargeable batteries in the state of California to provide consumers with a free program for returning rechargeable batteries for reuse, recycling, or proper disposal. Through Call2Recycle, retailers can fully comply with the new law and join the existing 4,695 locations in the state of California that already participate in the program.
* “New York City Rechargeable Battery Recycling Ordinance” (Introductory Number 70-A). RBRC was named as the solution for all New York City retailers needing to comply with the new law, effective December 1, 2006, which prohibits the disposal of rechargeable batteries as solid waste. The ordinance requires all New York City retailers that sell rechargeable batteries and products that contain these batteries to collect the used batteries. Call2Recycle features more than 300 locations in New York City, where consumers can drop off used rechargeable batteries and old cell phones at no cost.
* RBRC’s “Green Means Go.RECYCLE” Campaign. As part of its “Green Means Go.RECYCLE” campaign, RBRC encouraged NASCAR fans to learn about rechargeable battery and cell-phone recycling with an interactive exhibit. The 53-ft.-long modular exhibit and display featured a full-size racing simulator car, an interactive prize wheel where individuals were rewarded for their recycling knowledge, and fun, educational materials from RBRC. NASCAR fans are considered a key target audience by RBRC, because many of them frequently use power tools and other portable electronics that commonly use rechargeable batteries.
* INMETCO Partnership Expansion. RBRC and The International Metals Reclamation Company, Inc. (INMETCO) expanded their relationship to include joint marketing initiatives, such as appearances at trade shows and conferences, print and online collateral materials, and general media relations, which has resulted in reaching out to a larger audience.
“We would like to thank all of our partners for such a successful year, and we look forward to an even more successful 2007,” Millard concluded. “Just remember, if it is rechargeable, it is recyclable.”
For more information or to find the nearest participating drop-off location for rechargeable batteries, call 1-877-2-RECYCLE or visit www.call2recycle.org.