The old holiday adage that “it’s better to give than to receive” really rings true at the Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation (RBRC), a nonprofit organization dedicated to recycling old cell phones and used rechargeable batteries (www.call2recycle.org). Since its inception in 1996, it has collected 13,000 tons of materials in the U.S. and Canada.
RBRC collects the Nickel Cadmium (Ni-Cd), Nickel Metal Hydride (Ni-MH), Lithium Ion (Li-ion), and Small Sealed Lead (Pb) rechargeable batteries that power a variety of portable electronic products such as cellular and cordless phones, power tools, laptop computers, camcorders, two-way radios, and remote control toys.
Through its national program, Call2Recycle™, and with the help of local retail and community partners, consumers can now recycle these items through a convenient and environmental-friendly way at locations across the country. Local spots, such as Radio Shack, Home Depot and Staples, are easily located through the web site’s zip code locator feature. It’s a great way to do something useful with our old cell phones, which tend to get thrown into a drawer and forgotten about.
With that in mind, the RBRC received conducted a survey on Real Simple magazine’s promotional web site, Real Simple Rewards. The survey was developed to pinpoint Americans’ stockpiling habits and give guidance on how they can simplify their lives by recycling much of this clutter.
Aside from old textbooks, yearbooks and clothes, electronics were the most widely stockpiled item, according to survey respondents. In fact, nearly half of those surveyed (45%) said they were hoarding old cell phones in their homes. There just seems to be something about old electronics that causes us to keep them, even if we know they can be recycled. Could it be the money we spend on them? Or is it the fear that we will need a backup device in the event the new model becomes lost, stolen or damaged? Maybe a little bit of both?
In other survey results, 25% of Americans are still holding on to their “skinny jeans” in hopes of being able to wear them again. On the other hand, old love letters and pictures of ex-boyfriends and girlfriends are the first to be tossed when cleaning out the closet -- only 6% of those surveyed still had those mementos lying around.
Interested in locating participating retail stores in your area to drop off used rechargeable batteries and old cell phones? Visit www.call2recycle.org or call toll free 877-2-RECYCLE.