RBRC Recycles 50 Million Pounds of Rechargeable Batteries

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The Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation (RBRC) has reached another milestone with its Call2Recycle program, as 50 million pounds of rechargeable batteries have been collected and recycled in the past 15 years.

The RBRC has facilitated more than 30,000 drop-off locations in the U.S. and Canada for rechargeable batteries, including Best Buy, Home Depot and Target stores. Collection boxes are also located at public agencies such as fire departments and hospitals, and all participants receive pre-paid shipping labels and bags for containing the batteries. Members of the rechargeable battery and portable electronic product industry fund the collection and recycling.

50 million pounds of rechargeable batteries have been collected and recycled in the past 15 years. Photo: Rei.com

50 million pounds of rechargeable batteries have been collected and recycled in the past 15 years. Photo: Rei.com

In general, battery recycling is in demand. In fact, batteries were the top search term on Earth911’s recycling search engine during 2008. All batteries can be recycled to recover valuable metals and, in some cases, plastic.

The Call2Recycle program collects rechargeable batteries because they contain heavy metals such as cadmium and lead. The battery types that are currently covered include nickel cadmium, nickel metal hydride, nickel zinc, lithium ion and small sealed lead acid battery. The program also accepts and recycles cell phones to ensure that these batteries (usually lithium ion) are also recycled.

“We are proud of this achievement, which has benefited the environment by keeping more than 50 million pounds of rechargeable batteries out of landfills and the solid waste stream,” says Carl Smith, RBRC’s Chief Executive Officer. “This success is a testament to the admirable efforts of our partners, whose ongoing support and championing of Call2Recycle has been instrumental in raising consumer awareness and encouraging participation.”

Proving that RBRC is already targeting a new milestone, the Call2Recycle green recycling trailer will be at Nashville RadioShack stores this weekend to celebrate Earth Day by providing education, games and prizes for recyclers.

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Trey Granger
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