There is a safe method for recycling mercury-containing lamps.  What you just witnessed in the video below is not it.

Disposal of mercury-containing lamps is regulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) 40 CFR Part 273.  High-intensity discharge, linear and compact fluorescent lamps fall under this category.  While commercial and industrial entities are prohibited by law to discard these lamps in the trash, households are exempt from these regulations.  However, in some states like California and Massachusetts, residents are required to dispose of used lamps at hazardous waste collection facility or a local recycling facility.  For further information on regulations in your state, please see this list of resources compiled by

Thanks to, there is now a search tool that makes it easy to find the nearest lamp (or just about anything) recycling locations by zip code, city or state.

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