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Shared Responsibility in the Electrical Sector

Shared Responsibility in the Electrical Sector

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Shared Responsibility in the Electrical Sector

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  1. Shared Responsibility in the Electrical Sector Ric Erdheim Senior Manager – NEMA Executive Director – TRC November, 2002

  2. Outline • Describe TRC Recycling Program • Discuss Factors Applicable to TRC • Compare Battery and Lamp Industry Approaches • Recommend Criteria to Consider

  3. TRC Program – Why? • Concern about spent product disposal • 2.8 grams/switch, 1.4 switches/thermostat • Cannot reduce mercury in mercury switch thermostats • Non mercury thermostats can have disadvantages (energy efficiency, retrofitability, cost, durability, inappropriate for visually impaired and handicapped.)

  4. TRC Program – How? • Established cost-efficient program utilizing universal waste rule. • Three major manufacturers; • Honeywell, • White-Rodgers, • GE • Companies pay transportation and mercury recovery costs • TRC losses money – mercury has no value

  5. TRC Program – How? • TRC signs up HVAC (not electrical) wholesalers • Most thermostats sold through HVAC wholesalers, not retailers • One-time $15 fee per container • Receive TRC container (1X1X2 feet) • Brings in business.

  6. TRC Program – How? • List at www.nema.org/trcTRC • Free to contractors who install • When filled (50-100 stats) wholesaler ships container at TRC expense to clipping facility • Clipped ampuoles sent to Bethlehem Apparatus for mercury recovery

  7. TRC Program – How? • Letters to wholesalers and contractors • Twice/year Press releases published in trade press and information to states • Contact with NHRAW and ACCA HQ and local chapters • Contractor flier – Available on Website • Contractor requests to wholesalers

  8. TRC Program – How? • State and local government efforts – recovery greatest in states with aggressive efforts (Education, RCRA Enforcement, HHW Outreach, Container Placement, Pledge Program) • Incinerator Companies

  9. TRC Program – Results • 1/98-7/1/02 results (processed by TRC): • > 150,000 thermostats • > 1,300 pounds of mercury • 1,000 store participate

  10. NATIONAL COLLECTIONS

  11. PROGRAM LESSONS • Products vastly different: • Units Sold • Size • Fragility • Level of Hazardous Substance • Distribution Channel and Users (homeowners, businesses, specialized installers) • Availability and Attributes of Alternatives

  12. PROGRAM LESSONS • TRC program works because; • T stats contain grams/mercury (500-1000 times > CFLs or button batteries • Number sold • Economies from using existing limited distribution system • Contractors install • Small, sturdy & wholesalers properly handle

  13. BATTERY AND LAMP INDUSTRY APPROACH • Battery industry focused on source reduction. • Collection only where makes sense – RBRC rechargeable battery collection. • Lamp industry involved in both source reduction and recycling promotion for businesses.

  14. BUTTON BATTERIES • Button cells used in hearing aids, digital thermometers, insulin pumps, portable medical monitors, hospital pagers, watches, toys, and calculators • Button batteries sold in US annually contain 2 tons

  15. BUTTON BATTERIES • Disposal ban and collection not cost-effective. • According to analysis by Chittenden co. Vermont solid waste mgmt district, batteries and residential lamps are least cost-effective products to recover. • Need to recover 57,000 average hearing aid batteries to recover one pound of mercury

  16. LAMPS • 27 tons mercury in 1990 lamps • 9 tons mercury in 2001 lamps • 54,500 2001 average four foot lamps contain 1 pound mercury. • 113,000 CFLs contain 1 pound hg. • Use of mercury containing lamps reduces mercury in the environment.

  17. Lifetime Mercury Emissions * KEY Milligrams of Mercury CONCLUSIONS • Hg from lamp disposal is small compared to Hg released from power generation required to operate lamp • Incandescent lamps contain no mercury but result in the highest Hg emissions Magnetic TCLP FailingRecycled ElectronicTCLP CompliantIncinerated Equivalent Light Output ElectronicTCLP Compliant Recycled *Based on 20K burning hours, Hg content of 23 mg per T12 lamp, and 8 mg per T8 lamp. Hg content of fuels is the US weighted average for fossil and non-fossil fuels, calculated from “Environmental and Health Aspects of Lighting: Mercury” J.IES 1994. Disposal emissions assume 3% in residuals of recycling, 90% from incinerators.

  18. LAMPS • Lamp recycling has increased: • 1997 75 million • 2000 130 million • NEMA estimate 21-26% recycling rate • Existing infrastructure • Manufacturer collection mandate interferes with existing infrastructure and adds costs to preferable lighting source • 85% of lamps used by businesses

  19. LAMPS – OUTREACH • The internet (e.g., www.lamprecycle.org and www.almr.org)*. • Sponsored respectively by NEMA Lamp Manufacturers and Lamp Recyclers • Contains State and Federal rules • Lists Lamp Recyclers • Recommends recycling • EPA Recycling Outreach • $2 Million appropriation • $750K to ALMR, NEMA and SWANA

  20. SUMMARY • Different products have different attributes leading to different approaches. • Is recovery of product important because of volume or toxicity and is it worth the resources? • The market place is complex made up of competitors with different agendas using numerous product distribution paths. • What is the most cost-effective collection? • Is product distribution system available for collection? • Who are users (business vs. homeowner)? • If homeowner how do you make it convenient? • Does the spent product have value?

  21. SUMMARY • What education is available to users? • What roles should various participants play (consumers, retailers, wholesalers, governments, manufacturers, recyclers)?