August 1, 2005

Call2Recycle collects over 82 tonnes of rechargeable batteries in first half of 2005

During the first six months of 2005, more than 180,000 pounds (82,512 kilograms or 82.5 tonnes) of rechargeable batteries were collected in Canada through the Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation (RBRC)'s Call2Recycle(TM) program. This represents an increase of 8.5% from 2004. The U.S. program reported a 9% increase, collecting nearly 2.1 million pounds of rechargeable batteries for a combined total from both countries of over 2.2 million pounds.

The Call2Recycle program for recycling rechargeable battery and cell phones recycling features retail and community collection locations across Canada where consumers can drop off used rechargeable batteries and old cell phones. Through RBRC's recycling network, re-usable metals from nickel-cadmium (Ni-Cd), lithium ion (Li-ion), nickel metal hydride (Ni-MH) and small sealed lead (Pb) batteries are recovered and recycled to make new batteries, stainless steel and other products. Cell phones collected through the Call2Recycle program are recycled or refurbished and resold, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting national charities.

"As consumers grow increasingly reliant on the use of wireless products, so does the number of rechargeable batteries that can and should be recycled," said RBRC executive vice-president Ralph Millard. "As we continue to educate consumers and program participants on the importance and ease of recycling rechargeable batteries and cell phones, we hope that the numbers will continue to increase in the next six months," he added.

The group attributes the increase in collection numbers partly to recent efforts such as:

*participation by the Montreal Fire Department: In June, 65 Montreal fire stations signed on as active collection sites for the Call2Recycle program.

*waiving of all associated fees for businesses: Under this initiative, also announced in June, Canadian businesses need no longer pay for the shipping of rechargeable batteries and cell phones collected at the workplace. Once registered, participants receive a free shipment of collection boxes that includes pre-paid shipment, pre-addressed shipping labels, safety instructions and plastic bags for each used rechargeable battery and cell phone.

"The daily operations of most businesses depend on wireless technology to keep moving forward," the RBRC's Millard pointed out. "While these products can be used over and over again, they eventually wear out or are replaced with newer models. Call2Recycle offers businesses a unique opportunity to help preserve the environment, project a proactive image and to stay compliant with government regulations."

Businesses interested in enrolling in the Call2Recycle program can obtain details on the RBRC Web site, or by calling toll-free 888-224-9764.

In addition, RBRC's profile was raised through its sponsorship of the Oldtimers' Hockey Challenge 2005. During its western Canadian road tour, Guy Lafleur and other Canadian hockey legends played against local teams in cities such as Edmonton, Vancouver, Calgary, Saskatoon and Winnipeg. The RBRC also received the "Industry Steward of the Year" award at the 7th Annual Mobius Environmental Awards, presented by the Nova Scotia Resource Recovery Fund Board (RRFB).

The RBRC, a nonprofit, public service organization, has more than 30,000 retail and community collection locations in Canada and the U.S. participating in its cell phone and rechargeable battery recycling program. RBRC is funded by more than 300 manufacturers and marketers of portable rechargeable batteries and products.

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