Atlanta-based Call2Recycle Inc., a consumer battery stewardship organization, has reported that more than 7.5 million pounds of batteries were responsibly recycled in the U.S. in 2019. The Call2Reycle program achieved a 5 percent increase for all consumer batter recycled from 2018, with rechargeable battery collections growing 13 percent. Participating retail sites collected more than 3.3 million pounds of batteries, an increase of 7 percent from 2018, and municipalities collected more than 1.7 million pounds of batteries, an increase of 18 percent from 2018.
Since the program’s inception in 1994, more than 123 million pounds of batteries have been collected and recycled in the U.S.
“We have been very encouraged to see battery collections grow, especially consumers recycling lithium-ion batteries, the most common type of rechargeable batteries,” says Carl Smith, CEO and president of Call2Recycle. “Batteries power our lives and lithium-ion batteries, in particular, aren’t going away. This year’s 36 percent increase in lithium-ion batteries collected is a positive sign that consumers are becoming more and more aware that the portable cordless devices … that we use every day contain batteries that need to be safely and responsibly managed at their end of life.”
In 2016, the state of Vermont appointed Call2Recycle as its stewardship organization, challenging its residents to recycle their batteries at drop-off locations. Since the partnership, a 2019 Ipsos poll found that awareness of battery recycling increased among Vermont residents, with six out of 10 Vermonters believing that single-use batteries can be recycled.