It’s the end of August and the stores are filled with parents and kids loading up their carts with school supplies. Going back to school these days means having more than paper and pens. The kids are a lot more high-tech and electronically savvy than when I went to school. They take electronic devices to school like iPods, MP3 Players, Laptops, Cell Phones, Video Games, Calculators, and who knows what other paraphernalia. All of these require batteries to function. Depending on their use batteries can last 3 – 5 years but it always seems a lot less with teens.
At home we have batteries in our cameras, cell phones, toys, flashlights, more laptops, clocks, watches, our lawnmowers and yard equipment, vehicles, smoke detectors, and the list can go on. What do you do with the used batteries? Do you throw them out? Or are you like me and have them hanging around your home tucked away and forgotten. Maybe it’s time to do a little Fall cleaning!
De-clutter your drawers of harmful waste.
When it comes to fall cleaning, a quick search through your house can sometimes turn up some unexpected discoveries such as a ball of elastic bands, old light bulbs and used batteries in your drawers and closets. Some items are merely cluttering, while others are actually waste that may be harmful to the environment.
It could be that you’re like the many people who are hanging onto their batteries because they don’t know what to do with them, or simply putting them in the garbage with regular household waste. About a third of Ontarians confess to tossing their old batteries in the garbage.
“Recycling your batteries is convenient and easy-to-do. Some batteries contain materials that are harmful to our environment if disposed of incorrectly, and it’s our responsibility to ensure that doesn’t happen,” says Paul Gerard, spokesperson for Stewardship Ontario, the private not-for-profit company that runs Orange Drop, a program providing Ontario residents with a free, safe and easy way to dispose of materials that are harmful to the environment if disposed of incorrectly. “The next time you take charge of household clutter and stumble upon some forgotten used batteries, remember to take them to one of the over 2,000 drop-off locations in the province to have them recycled. Find your nearest drop-off location by visiting: www.makethedrop.ca.”
Not only does separating batteries from your garbage prevent potentially harmful materials from contaminating our drinking water, but properly recycled batteries have valuable resources that can be recovered and used as new ingredients in producing new goods.
Check out what battery recycling steps have been taken in your community. Where we live there is a battery recycle depots in the city landfill area.