Recolight has announced two new initiatives to support and encourage reuse in the lighting sector, avoiding the need to recycle.
While Recolight is best-known for giving its customers access to the UK’s most comprehensive free lamp collection and recycling service, it first and foremost prioritises reuse. That’s because, environmentally, reuse is preferable to recycling.
Nigel Harvey, Recolight’s CEO, commented, “Every year, we recycle hundreds of thousands of light fittings. Some of those could be re-manufactured and re-used. We want to collect as much data as possible regarding fittings scheduled for disposal – and to make that information, and the fittings, available to companies that may be able to upgrade or remanufacture the products.
“When products are recycled, much of the embedded value is destroyed. That value is preserved if products are re-used. Like all WEEE schemes, Recolight is therefore under a legal obligation to prioritise re-use over recycling. These new initiatives will help us meet that legal duty – and create new remanufacturing opportunities for the UK lighting industry.”
“Re-use is a vital way in which we can collectively respond to the climate crisis. The new approach is undoubtedly a culture shift, and all of us in the lighting sector will need to play our part. The need for contractors to ensure that re-usable products are removed carefully and set aside is particularly important.”
So, how does Recolight hope to encourage reuse rather than recycling? Well, first it plans to make it easier for its members to get access to practical help that will enable their products to be reused.
The second service is focused on surplus new lighting equipment that is no longer offered for sale.
Introducing the service, Francesca Cameron, Recolight Collections and Membership Development Coordinator, noted, “At Recolight we get requests to arrange the recycling of redundant or remaindered stock, often at short notice, to free up warehouse space. Rather than recycle it, we want to make that product available to other organisations such as charities. Recolight members will be given access to an app that allows them to upload details of products. Recolight will then collect them for free, and store them for free, if a recipient cannot immediately be found.”