Call2Recycle, North America's first and largest consumer battery stewardship and recycling program, has reported that their partners, stewards and collection sites recycled nearly 14 million pounds (6.3 million kilograms) of batteries throughout the U.S. and Canada in 2017. These results contribute to Call2Recycle's mission of keeping batteries out of landfills. To date, the program has recycled 144 million pounds (65 million kilograms) of batteries.
Call2Recycle seeks to promote battery recycling awareness and activism through its partnerships with industry stewards and collection partners, including municipalities and retailers. Many factors shaped the battery recycling landscape and collections efforts in 2017, including: growth in primary battery recycling in the U.S., an increase in battery reuse (an eco-friendly approach) and a rise in products with non-removable batteries.
In the U.S., overall collections of rechargeable and primary batteries totaled 8 million pounds (3.6 million kilograms). New recycling options generated an increase in primary battery collection by more than 20 percent. The program experienced growth in light of the introduction of a fee-based all-battery offering.
"To grow battery recycling, you need diligent partners, robust consumer efforts and an ongoing commitment to create change," said Carl Smith, CEO & president of Call2Recycle, Inc. "Our industry stewards, collection partners and consumers continue to lead the charge on battery recycling, fueling innovation and momentum in the marketplace."
Vermont - the first state in the U.S. requiring producers to finance a collection and recycling program for single-use (primary) batteries - also contributed to overall growth. Consumers collected 81,000 pounds (36,700 kilograms) of batteries via the Call2Recycle program, which is the appointed stewardship organization for Vermont. Total battery collections in 2017 grew by 14 percent over last year. Since Vermont's program launch in 2016, more than 250,000 pounds (113,000 kilograms) of batteries have been recycled via convenient drop-off sites across the state.
Canadian consumers collected 2.6 million kilograms (5.7 million pounds) of batteries in 2017, similar to collections in previous years. As the approved battery stewardship program in British Columbia, Manitoba and Quebec, Call2Recycle also supports battery recycling across the country. This year, Quebec led the charge in battery collections totaling more than 1 million kilograms (2.2 million pounds), with British Columbia collecting 620,000 kilograms (1.3 million pounds) and Manitoba collecting 92,000 kilograms (202,000 pounds).
"2017 included substantial investments in both consumer accessibility and awareness efforts across Canada," stated Joe Zenobio, president for Call2Recycle Canada, Inc. "Through these investments and in partnership with our committed members and collections sites, we look forward to seeing collections grow in 2018."
Providing easy and convenient recycling options to consumers through the establishment of collection locations across North America has also contributed to the organization's continued success. Today, more than 86 percent of residents in the U.S. and Canada live within 10 miles (15 kilometers) of one of Call2Recycle's public drop-off locations.