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Eco rant - Alkaline batteries, Canadian Tire has lost a customer
post Jan 23 2012 - 12:26 PM
Post #1

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From: London, ON
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Now I consider myself an environmentally attuned individual;

- I drive a smart car for all my day to day client visits
- Our "family" vehicle is a hybrid VUE (I have 2 kids and 2 large dogs!)
- I use setback thermostats to avoid heating the house when we're not home
- We use dimmers throughout the house and leave the lights off when a room is empty
- We run dishwashers and laundry appliances during "off-peak" times and as little as possible, and
- We use Ni-MH batteries as much as possible

but sometimes you just need to feed the toys alkaline batteries.

I collect up used alkaline batteries to dispose of them properly; there are terrible environmental consequences for simply dumping these into the municipal trash collection system.

So today I pulled into Canadian Tire to get a few things. I walked through the door and took a look around for the recycling station. Found the CF bulb recycling box right away but could not find a battery disposal box.

The young lady at the counter asked if she could help.

"Where's your battery recycling station?", I asked.

"Oh, we don't do that", she replied.
"But just leave them here with me", she added.

"What are you going to do with them?", I asked.

"Oh, we'll just throw them into our trash", she responded.

"What?!", I said. "I could've done that, but it's terribly irresponsible!"

"We do it all the time", she answered with a shrug.

That's when I politely informed her that Canadian Tire had lost a good and long time client; I took the batteries across the road to Home Depot where they do recycle batteries.

Now I can understand them not having a recycling station but to collect them anyway for disposal in municipal landfills is just downright bad!

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Mods: euro turn signals, oil pan heater, K&N filter, scan gauge, ignition free windows, remote window switch, tach & clock pods, clear/amber side LED's, flashing side markers, vortex generators, headrest speakers, 4 channel Pioneer head unit, arch extensions front and back, Prosport boost gauge in clock pod, H&R sport springs, wiper arm spray mod, tint, factory cruise control, remap and upgraded intercooler fan.
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Mike T
post Jan 23 2012 - 12:49 PM
Post #2

Ordered our first smart in 2002!

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That is indeed bad. Around here there are lots of places to recycle batteries, including bottle depots.

I want to take a run at the fast food places for not recycling or composting their trash, the amount of plastic and paper that is landfilled from those sources is atrocious.

Even the new Tim Horkoff's (Horton's, sorry, Russian slip-up) "recycling stations" are only there to collect the refundables, nothing else is sorted and all the rest goes into the trash.

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post Jan 23 2012 - 01:29 PM
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Around here there was talk of new by-laws that would enable towns to fine Tim Hortons, McDonalds et al for the littering actions of their patrons. At the top of the access road that leads into our mature subdivision, they built (first) a McDs and (a few years later) a Tim's; there is now trash from both these places on most streets. Seems to be trendy to actually place one's bag of either, standing up, in the middle of the road.

I don't know what became of these propsals, and I'm too lazy to check.


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post Jan 23 2012 - 05:31 PM
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i look for small local company's that take these environmental returns now, i found a nice lil reuse store that took electronic good for recycling. but also found they have a heat exchanger to recover hot water going down the drain. looks like the new project for the house now.
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post Jan 24 2012 - 11:20 AM
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"I collect up used alkaline batteries to dispose of them properly; there are terrible environmental consequences for simply dumping these into the municipal trash collection system."

I used to believe the same thing. No one does not want to be green

When it comes to alkaline batteries, many people incorrectly believe that they are a hazard to the environment when disposed in landfills. Sure it would be nice to have someone take apart each battery so that the metal could be reused but that is prohibitively expensive if the only goal is to use the metal and there is no other environmental saving. That would be similar to having some one remove each individual nail from the scrap that is sent to a landfill from a reroofing job. The ECO fee that would need to be attached to the purchase would be justified and would be way more money than the battery itself. Just be absolutely sure that you are not buying the cheapest batteries that you can find...i.e. Chinese made, so that you can trust the purity of the product. These may pose the biggest threat to the environment on both sides of the Pacific.

This is one manufacturer's recommendation.


"Our alkaline batteries are composed primarily of common metals—steel, zinc, and manganese—and do not pose a health or environmental risk during normal use or disposal."

This post has been edited by gordo.bernard: Jan 24 2012 - 07:23 PM
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post Jan 24 2012 - 12:58 PM
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I recall seeing a "Marketplace" or similar story about battery disposal. I don't think anyone is doing it for regular household batteries, as strange as it may seem. There is some value in recycling rechargeable batteries, but is only done on a small scale.
Recycling batteries (and other materials) is done as a "business" and the whole social conscience thing is pushed aside when the dollars are not there. I also read somewhere that Toronto styrofoam is collected and sent to China for processing! I guess we don't need it because so little manufacturing calls for the material in Canada.
But that's the loopy world we live in - asparagus from Chile, squash from Mexico, apples from New Zealand!

my ex - '05 Pulse stream green/black tridion cabrio, a/c (?), fanfare, CD changer, Loblaws beach towels (smiley serpents or smiley faces) on seats, "GOTSMART" plates, ordered Sept '04, delivered Feb '05, was under the care of Uncle Glenn and Liz and now CANMAN!

INSPIRED BY my smart, I'm going to lounge around in a white Fiat 500 for a while. It is just crazy enough.
And now, our Volt is here!
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post Jan 24 2012 - 02:01 PM
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There are companies recycling alkaline batteries, here in BC...


This post has been edited by lebikerboy: Jan 24 2012 - 02:03 PM

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post Jan 24 2012 - 02:57 PM
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some of the metal recycling yards around toronto will take alkaline batteries. they want a few pound though, dont pay a lot only a few cents. a few years ago a guy i worked for had a bucket we tossed used batterys into used at the shop. it got full an we took in 160# of used batterys an got $35 for em.
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post Jan 24 2012 - 06:33 PM
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In Ontario battery recycling is left up up to the manicupality, it is them who decide where the boxes get left etc. In Quebec I think it is a provincial gov thing, post office has the box to recycle etc.

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post Mar 15 2012 - 03:56 PM
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just about every Home Depot has recycling containers for non-rechargeable batteries and cfl's.

Go to the customer service returns area, tall boxes right there.


driving a smart is, well.............just SMART!!

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