Check Recycling Off Your Holiday “To-Do” List

Informed Consumers Can Make Shopping Trips Work Harder by Remembering the Recyclables

earth in a red gift box

ATLANTA (December 3, 2012) – During the busy holiday season, it’s easy to forget about helping the environment.  Yet, this season Call2Recycle®, a product stewardship organization managing the only no-cost battery and cellphone collection program in North America, makes it easier than ever to “drop and shop” by offering convenient on-site recycling collection points at many stores where consumers are already going for holiday purchases.

According to a new study by the Consumer Electronics Association, overall consumer holiday spending is expected to increase 11% this year, with spending on consumer electronics expected to account for nearly a third of all gift spending.  Three in four (76 percent) of gift giving adults plan to purchase consumer electronic products as a gift this year.

This level of consumption means many old batteries and cellphones will be ready to be recycled.  Major retailers such as RadioShack, The Home Depot, Staples, Best Buy, and Lowe’s, all offer in-store collection, making it an easy task to incorporate into a holiday shopping trip. “RadioShack is proud to offer our customers a convenient and responsible way to divert rechargeable batteries from the waste stream,” said Jackie Kimberling, Vice President Distribution Support and Compliance Services at RadioShack Corp (NYSE: RSH). “With nearly 4,500 convenient locations nationwide, it just takes a minute to drop off used spent rechargeable batteries and cellphones while shopping for holiday gifts.” Through its partnership with Call2Recycle, RadioShack Corp and its dealer stores have collected over 6.4 million pounds of rechargeable batteries since 1996.

Last year Americans spent an average of 19 hours holiday shopping, and an additional three hours waiting in line, according to Consumer Reports.  Many of these consumers likely spent time at a retailer with a take-back program: recent survey data reports that 80% of consumers have positive feelings about stores that offer such programs.* “By making it easy and convenient, we are dramatically expanding consumer participation in collection and recycling programs,” says Carl Smith, CEO and president of Call2Recycle, “As more locations offer busy consumers ways to incorporate recycling into their regular shopping activity, the practice will become habit, contributing to a healthier environment.”

Through its partnerships with retailers and communities, Call2Recycle continually works to enhance its collection network to provide consumers with various recycling options. Ninety-one percent of the U.S. population has access to a Call2Recycle battery collection location within ten miles of their residence.

Call2Recycle has developed some tips to help busy consumers check “recycling” off their holiday to-do list.

  • Your “4th Bin” – set up a bin or bag (ideally near your front or back door) for your family to leave recyclables

  • Sound the alarm – On your smartphone or computer, set up a regular reminder to gather up your rechargeable batteries to take to your local retailer

  • Regularly clean out the junk drawer – On a regular basis, task a family member with going through the junk drawer for recyclables and other unused or old items

  • Keep your errand list on hand at all times – This will help you prioritize stops; make one retail trip work harder

  • Replace rechargeable batteries in bulk – If you have just dropped off six batteries for recycling, buy a dozen. You will likely save money and time as well as prevent family member complaints

Call2Recycle maintains a network of over 30,000 collection locations across North America providing a no-cost and convenient way to recycle cellphones and rechargeable batteries found in electronic products, such as laptop computers, tablets, digital cameras, cordless power tools and two-way radios.  For more information and to find local drop-off locations, visit www.call2recycle.org.

Call2Recycle® is a product stewardship program providing no-cost battery and cellphone recycling solutions across the U.S. and Canada. Operated by Call2Recycle, Inc., a 501(c)4 nonprofit public service organization, the program is funded by battery and product manufacturers committed to responsible recycling.