Provide convenient mechanism to responsibly collect and manage mercury containing thermostats at the end of their useful life and divert them from disposal in landfills and waste to energy facilities. Collaboration between Covanta, Locke Supply–an Oklahoma-based Plumbing, Electrical & HVAC Distributor, with locations throughout the state–the Choctaw Nation, DEQ, the Product Stewardship Institute, and the Thermostat Recycling Corporation. Mercury is a heavy metal that represents a threat to human health and the environment when released into the environment. An average wall thermostat contains 4 grams of mercury, which is the equivalent of 800 compact fluorescent lights.
How was the Project Started?
Covanta Energy initiated the dialogue while looking for ways to divert mercury containing thermostats from the MSW stream combusted at their facililty. Collaboration between Covanta, Locke Supply, a statewide hardward store, DEQ and the Product Stewardship Institute.
When was the Project Started?
The project started during 2015 and has been on-going.
When was the Project Completed, or is it Ongoing?
It is on-going.
What are the Results to Date?
Need updated numbers, but as of April 2017 more 40 collection sites established throughout the state. Approximately 450 thermostats collected containing more than 5.4 pounds of mercury.
What are the Resources Needed, including Time, Cost, Etc.?
Locke Supply as the drop off site, there is NO FEE. Covanta sponsored all Locke sites and Locke paid for some of the one time fees.
- There is an initial $25.00 fee per collection site the Thermostat Recycling Corporation charges to set up a site with a box, materials and pre-paid mailing label.
- At least once per year (or more often if the box fills up), you apply the pre-paid mailing label the your site’s dedicated box and mail it to Thermostat Recycling Corp.
- They empty your box and return your box to you quickly with a brand new, pre-paid mailing label. Other costs include promotional material and time.
- Patrick Riley
- Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality
- Environmental Programs Manager