Date: November 8, 2006
Source: EQ - The Environmental Quality Company
EQ Becomes Project Manager for the End of Life Vehicle Solutions (ELVS) National Mercury Recovery Program
Historically, mercury switches were used in autos for convenience lights (under the hood or in the trunk) and in anti-lock braking systems. As of 2002, automakers no longer use mercury switches in new vehicles. However, an estimated 32 million vehicles containing mercury are still in use. When retired vehicles are recycled, however, the mercury from unrecovered switches can be released into the environment. That is why End of Life Vehicle Solutions (ELVS) has contracted EQ - The Environmental Quality Company to be the nationwide program manager for the mercury switch program and to ensure mercury switches are properly recycled. Retrieving the switches before vehicles are melted down will keep an estimated 32 metric tons of mercury out of the environment. ELVS was created by the automotive industry to promote the industry's environmental efforts in recyclability, education and outreach, and the proper management of substances of concern.
This national program includes a commitment by automakers to provide information regarding switch removal and to take responsibility for collection, transportation, and recycling of the switches. Auto dismantlers and others who recover switches will submit them to EQ for proper management. Steelmakers and those who produce steel scrap for steelmaking use will promote participation in the program and also act to ensure mercury switches are removed.
"EQ is proud to partner with the ELVS consortium to reduce the impact of mercury in our environment," stated Tom Schuck, Executive Vice-President of EQ. "We provide a quick and easy way to prevent automotive mercury from going to the vehicle shredder." ELVS, through EQ, provides dismantlers with storage buckets for the collection of automotive mercury switches. Dismantlers remove the switches and place the mercury in the provided bucket. Once the bucket is ready for shipment, the dismantler contacts EQ who will in turn arrange for no-cost shipping of the switches. EQ will then facilitate the recycling of the mercury switches.
"ELVS is pleased to be working with EQ on this landmark collection program," said Mary Bills, Executive Director of ELVS. "We have already made great progress in collecting switches with the assistance of state agencies and the dismantlers. These switches are then transported to EQ where they are recycled. With EQ's help and expertise, we look forward to continuing that progress." This is a continuous growth process that continues to move forward with its national effort to educate vehicle dismantlers on switch removal by providing a DVD and written instructions on the removal and recycling of mercury switches. More information can be found at www.elvsolutions.org.
About EQ - The Environmental Quality Company
EQ - The Environmental Quality Company is a fully integrated environmental service and waste management organization based in Wayne, Michigan. EQ owns ISO and QS certified treatment, disposal and recycling facilities and manages an extensive line of remediation, industrial cleaning and in-plant services. As the largest privately held environmental services organization in Michigan, EQ generates annual revenues of approximately $200 million. For additional information on EQ and its involvement with ELVS, please go to www.eqonline.com.
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