The information below provides guidance for retailers, wholesalers, distributors, producers, utilities, and local governments to comply with Washington's mercury-containing lights product stewardship program.
For the purposes of this program, the producer of mercury-containing lights sold in or into Washington includes a person or entity that:
Ecology maintains a list of producers of mercury lights.
Every producer of mercury-containing lights sold in or into Washington for retail sale must:
Sign up to receive program updates.
The updated Washington State Mercury-Containing Lights Product Stewardship Plan was approved by Ecology on Jan. 1, 2017. For questions please contact Joanne Neugebauer-Rex at 360-407-7602 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are interested in becoming a collector, contact LightRecycle Washington's Peter Thermos at 206-850-7383 or email@example.com.
The Mercury-Containing Lights Law (Chapter 70.275 RCW) requires producers to finance the stewardship program through an environmental handling charge added to all mercury-containing lights sold at retail locations in the state. The handling charge covers the cost to recycle all lights collected by the program.
Guidance on the environmental handling charge
Guidance on sales of mercury-containing lights
Guidance on the business and occupation tax and sales of mercury-containing lights
The mercury light producers selected PCA Product Stewardship Inc. (PCA) as the program operator for LightRecycle Washington.
On Nov. 1, 2017, PCA recommended an Environmental Handling Charge of 95 cents be applied to each mercury-containing light sold at retail in or into Washington. Ecology reviewed materials provided by PCA for this purpose, including a budget overview and a summary of assumptions, along with an overview and discussion of the documents hosted by PCA. Ecology sent a letter to PCA on Nov. 29, 2017 approving the 95-cent charge. The new charge is effective Feb. 1, 2018.
Mercury-Containing Lights - proper disposal (Chapter 70.275 RCW), establishes a producer-financed product stewardship program for the collection, recycling, and disposal of mercury-containing lights. In March 2014, the law was amended to require the producers to finance the stewardship program through an environmental handling charge added to all mercury-containing lights sold at retail in the state. LightRecycle Washington is in operation as of Jan. 1, 2015.
Some utilities already offer fluorescent light recycling programs and many local governments collect mercury containing lights in their household hazardous waste programs. This product stewardship program should help reduce their costs for managing this waste stream.