With Call2Recycle, Batteries Never Die - September 14th 2012
From laptops to cordless drills, cellphones to calculators, battery-powered devices are everywhere in our home and work lives. On average, North Americans use six wireless products a day, each requiring rechargeable batteries. And that doesn’t include devices that take single use batteries, like remote controls or children’s toys. We rely on these compact carriers of electrical power to stay connected, be entertained, conduct our work, and provide help in emergencies.
While some rechargeable batteries can operate for as long as five years, even rechargeables eventually run out of power. Approximately three billion – yes, billion – batteries are disposed of every year across America. The number of AA batteries alone, lined up end to end, would circle the earth six times. We’ve all heard that we shouldn’t throw batteries out with the regular trash, and there is good reason for this. Batteries are considered hazardous waste, containing toxic materials that over time can build up in the soil and water table; therefore, it’s important to dispose of them responsibly and keep them out of our landfill. So what is the best way to handle a battery that has reached the end of its life?
Perhaps the most responsible—and convenient—thing we can do with our used batteries is to recycle them. Many people don’t know that expired batteries contain a number of valuable, reusable metals, such as nickel, iron, lead, and cobalt. And that is where Call2Recycle® comes in.
Call2Recycle, a free battery recycling program offers drop-off boxes in convenient locations such as stores, municipal buildings and corporate offices all across Canada. You can find the one nearest you on their website call2recycle.ca. Once you drop off your battery, it is shipped to a sorting facility where batteries are separated by chemistry. From there, the sorted batteries go to processing facilities where their reusable components are removed and collected.
In this way, your battery is able to take on a new life. Through the process, none of the broken down material goes to landfill. Instead it is reused to make new batteries, stainless steel products and cement additives. Call2Recycle also accepts cellphones, which it refurbishes, resells or recycles. Since 1996, more than 34 million kilograms of batteries have been diverted from landfills through the program.
We can all do our part to make the most of the life of our batteries, both while we use them at home or at work, and afterward when we are done with them. Following the steps below will help to extend the working life of your batteries, and through the Call2Recycle program, you can ensure that your batteries never become e-waste, but are put to valuable reuse. Recycling batteries through Call2Recycle is a responsible and easy way for all of us to do our part to protect the environment.
Six simple steps to extend the life of your batteries:
- Do not mix new batteries with old ones or with other objects, such as metal keys. This will shorten the life of the new battery or may cause heat and sparks.
- Keep your batteries and equipment containing batteries in a cool place. Overheating will speed up the chemical reaction and shorten the battery’s life.
- Only use similar batteries in a single device. Do not mix rechargeable batteries with disposable batteries. It may ruin the equipment and shorten the life of the batteries.
- Do not throw away battery-powered items with the batteries still inside. Remove the batteries and recycle them through Call2Recycle or dispose of them through the proper hazardous waste channels.
- Never take apart or tamper with the case of the battery.
- Always point the positive and negative terminals of the batteries in the right direction (as indicated in the device) when installing in the equipment.
To find a nearby Call2Recycle drop-off location that accepts batteries and cellphones, visit www.call2recycle.ca and search by postal code or call 1-888-224-9764.