Comparative analysis of fluorescent lamp recycling and disposal options Article

cited authors

  • Tansel, B; Reyes-Osorno, B; Tansel, IN

abstract

  • Over 600 million fluorescent lamps are disposed each year in the U.S. A large fraction of the fluorescent lamps are used in industrial areas which are routinely replaced resulting in generation of large quantities of used lamps. Approximately 82 percent of the lamps disposed are landfilled, 16 percent are incinerated, and only 2 percent are recycled. Disposal of large quantities of fluorescent lamps in landfills is a concern due to the potential risks to human health and the environment caused by mercury leaching. This paper investigates economic feasibility of recycling methods for fluorescent lamps in comparison to landfill disposal. Overall waste management costs for used fluorescent lamps depend on factors such as quantity of used lamps, proximity of disposal site and/or recycling facility, and state and local taxes. In this study three waste management scenarios were evaluated from an economic perspective. The waste management options evaluated included: 1. disposing of fluorescent lamps in an hazardous waste landfill, 2. disposing a portion of the lamps as industrial waste based on chemical testing and the remainder in an hazardous waste landfill, and 3. recycling.

publication date

  • May 1, 1998

start page

  • 82

end page

  • 88

volume

  • 25

issue

  • 2