When the lights turn off

What happen when a fluorescent light stops working?

Most people think that we can throw out that kind of residues wherever we want, but it’s quite far from the truth. Fluorescent lights have some materials like mercury or fluorescent dust which are dangerous for the environment and also for humans.

For this reason, there are some companies that recollect them in order to recycle them in the most appropriate way such as AMBILAMP, a Spanish company whose main objective is the recollection and the subsequent treatment of the residues. AMBILAMP follows a “double model of inverse logistics plan” whose main object is to take responsibility for the product since its production. As the image below shows, this company has a lot of different points of collection according to the different sizes in different countries.



On the other hand, the recycling process consists in: cut of the metal endings, crushing and separation of the materials. The percentage of recycled material in 2011 was: glass 83.8 %, metals 9.3%, fluorescent dust 3.3%, plastic 3.6 % and Hg distillation 0.002%. All of these materials are used for the production of many other things we usually use.


Here, there’s a video about the company regarding its recycling project:

Finally, I would like to add that materials can be reused in different ways such as sculptures or to create new spaces but the most important thing is to know how much work is behind every little thing we stop using in our daily life without been aware of it.

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