HONG KONG Committed to support environmental protection, KMB was the first enterprise in Hong Kong to participate in the fluorescent tube recycling campaign. Since it began in April 2006, KMB has collected and recycled 427,000 tubes by the end of June 2011, dramatically reducing the impact of solid waste on the environment.
Light is generated when an electric current activates mercury atoms in the tube. When the tube reaches the end of its life, a small amount of mercury remains in the tube. Recycling helps reduce the pollutant at source, avoiding any long-term effects of mercury on the environment.
KMB has set up five collection points at Lai Chi Kok Depot, Kowloon Bay Depot, Sha Tin Depot, Tuen Mun Depot and Tuen Mun KMB Overhaul Centre, which gather spent tubes from around 3,800 buses and over 2,000 bus shelters, as well as from bus depots. Whenever a tube is replaced, the packing material of the new tube is used to wrap the old tube. Spent tubes are stored in a designated area, from which a licensed contractor regularly collects them for recycling. The contractor removes the mercury before crushing them into glass granules, allowing the retrieved mercury, glass granules and other metal parts to be reused. Apart from fluorescent tubes, KMB has also implemented a waste reduction programme in other areas, including the collection for recycling of waste paper, rechargeable batteries and the plastic cartridges used in fax machines and printers.