All of the rivers and ponds in Concord are contaminated with mercury, and residents are warned not to eat the fish because of the high levels of mercury in the fish that live in the water. The source of this contamination is mercury in rainwater. The mercury in rainwater is thought to come from coal-burning power plants in the mid west (50%), local medical incinerators (25%), and local solid waste incinerators (25%). Mercury in local solid waste incinerators comes from fluorescent bulbs, mercury fever thermometers, thermostats, button batteries, and similar mercury-containing devices. The best way to prevent mercury from ending up in our lakes and streams is to keep it out of our incinerators. Residents can recycle many mercury-containing devices at locations in Concord.
Fluorescent bulbs: All fluorescent bulbs, straight, U, circular, and compact contain mercury may be recycled at Concord Public Works located at 133 Keyes Road, Monday-Thursday 9:00 AM to 3 PM. In addition items may be recycled at Vanderhoof Hardware.
Button Batteries: Small button batteries used in watches, hearing aids, laser pointers, and more still contain small amounts of mercury and other heavy metals. These batteries may be recycled at Concord Public Works, Monday-Thursday 9:00 AM to 3 PM.
Intact mercury-containing devices, such as thermostats and fever thermometers, may be recycled at Concord Public Works located at 133 Keyes Road, Monday-Thursday 9 AM to 3 PM.
Mercury that is not contained in a manufactured device, such as mercury from a broken fever thermometer, a jar of elemental mercury, and more should be taken to the Minuteman Regional Household Hazardous Waste Facility. Contact Concord Public Works at 978-318-3240 for more information on hazardous waste disposal.