HC Deb 11 January 2000 vol 342 c119W
Mr. Bennett

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what percentage of used fluorescent lights from Government buildings are recycled. [104293]

Mr. Meacher

The percentage is small. Only some 25,000 fluorescent tubes have been recycled under the Government-wide call off contract which the Disposal Sales Agency awarded to Biffa Waste Services Limited in June 1998. The potential market was estimated at 800,000 tubes a year. But contracts of this nature take time to bed down. The extra cost of recycling is deterring some premises managers from using the contract. Others are bound by existing contracts and must wait until they expire. The time intervals for replacing tubes can also vary between two and several years depending on circumstances. There are also logistical considerations such as storage space. Efforts continue to encourage managers to use the contract.