When your CFL bulb’s life is finished, it needs to be properly recycled because it contains a small amount of mercury. The mercury is contained within the glass tubing—usually less than 5 milligrams—about the size of the period at the end of this sentence. By comparison, an older thermometer contains about 500 milligrams of mercury.
You can recycle your CFL bulbs at your local PUD office or at Home Depot in Sequim. For more information on the proper disposal of CFLs, please visit one of these informative web sites:
Or, check out these informative publications:
CFLs Reduce Mercury in the Environment
Burning coal to produce electricity is the main source of mercury emissions in the U.S. Because they use less electricity than incandescent lights, CFLs actually reduce the amount of mercury released into the environment. A 13-watt, 8,000-hour CFL will save 376 kWh over its lifetime compared to its 60-watt incandescent equivalent, thus preventing 4.6 milligrams of mercury from entering the environment.