About the Project

Did you know that many older products were manufactured with mercury? Due to its unique properties, mercury has been used in a variety of commercial and consumer products including thermometers, tilt switches and thermostats. For a list of products that were manufactured with mercury, please visit the Mercury Identification page.

Managing Mercury

Mercury is a toxic, bioaccumulative and persistent heavy metal that threatens human and ecosystem health.  It is important that mercury-containing products are properly recycled once they reach the end of their useful life so the mercury isn’t released into our air, water or soil. The products recovered through this project are counted, documented, and safely recycled through a process called retort. Visit our FAQ page to find out more about the retort process and get answers to other common program questions.

Region of Peel Pilot

Thanks to generous seed funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation; Scout Environmental and the Region of Peel have launched a pilot project to target and collect older and less traceable mercury-containing products often referred to as “orphaned”. These products are not covered by traditional extended producer responsibility (EPR) programs that require the manufacturer to pay for product management at the end of its useful life.

Through this project, Scout Environmental and the Regional Municipality of Peel are taking deliberate actions to benefit the environment by:

  1. Identifying the types of orphaned products that contain mercury and developing best practices and training guides to ensure their proper management;
  2. Designing and running a collection sweep to encourage Peel residents to drop off mercury-containing products at the Region’s Community Recycling Centres for responsible recycling;
  3. Analyzing data on the number and types of orphan mercury products recovered and evaluating the most effective outreach strategies to encourage residents to recycle these products; and
  4. Developing a toolkit which details recovery methods, outreach materials, and lessons learned. This toolkit will be used to encourage other Ontario municipalities to undertake orphan mercury recovery projects in their regions.

Other Communities

Scout Environmental would like to help other municipalities run Mercury Roundup projects.  If you would like to learn more about kick starting this project in your community, please contact us.