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General Laws

Section 6J. (a) No person shall sell or offer to sell or distribute a mercury-added product in the commonwealth unless the manufacturer has created and filed with the department a convenient and accessible collection plan for mercury-added products at the end-of-life, including a system for the direct return of the mercury-added product to the manufacturer or a collection and recycling plan, in accordance with chapter 21C and the department’s regulations concerning hazardous waste, using new or existing collection systems. The plan shall be approved or certified, as determined by the department, and shall be implemented by the manufacturers.

(b) Where a mercury-added component is part of another product, the collection system must provide for collection of the mercury-added component or collection of both the mercury-added component and the product containing it.

(c) Every manufacturer of mercury-added products sold or distributed in the commonwealth shall be financially responsible for such collection and recycling systems.

(d) (1) Manufacturers of mercury-added lamps shall satisfy the requirements of this section if, individually or as a group, they develop an education plan for consumers and municipalities for the proper use and disposal of mercury-added lamps. The plan shall include, but not be limited to:

(i) Information regarding the economic and environmental benefits of mercury-added lamps;

(ii) Information regarding the harms mercury can cause to the environment and to human health;

(iii) Information regarding proper disposal and recycling methods for mercury-added lamps; and

(iv) Information, provided to consumers through the use of a toll-free telephone number, internet web sites, information labeled on the device, information included in the packaging or information accompanying the sale of mercury-added lamps, describing where and how to return, recycle or dispose of mercury-added lamps. Information provided to consumers shall include the meaning of the chemical symbol “Hg” and other symbols and non-English terms.

(2) Every manufacturer, either individually or as a group, shall annually certify in writing that they are implementing the plan in accordance with this section and provide to the department the total number of mercury-added lamps sold in the commonwealth in that calendar year. The statewide mercury-added lamp recycling rates shall be 30 per cent by December 31, 2008, 40 per cent by December 31, 2009, 50 per cent by December 31, 2010, 70 per cent by December 31, 2011, and 70 per cent each year thereafter. The department shall adopt regulations to implement these rates. For the purposes of this section, the statewide mercury added-lamp recycling rate shall be based upon the total number of mercury added-lamps in the commonwealth available for recycling, as determined by the department. Every manufacturer, either individually or as a group, shall annually submit a report that identifies progress toward these recycling rates. The department shall conduct audits, at least annually, to determine if manufacturers are complying with this section.

(e) Failure to achieve any of the recycling rates established by or pursuant to paragraph (2) of subsection (d) shall obligate the manufacturers of mercury-added lamps as a group to make available not more than $1,000,000, per year of non-compliance, to the department for grants to municipalities or regional authorities to facilitate meeting recycling rates. The department shall establish, by December 31, 2007, a process for determining the mercury-added lamp recycling rate and the aggregate and individual funding commitments based on information that includes, but is not limited to, the actual recycling rate compared with the target recycling rate, each manufacturer’s lamp market share in the commonwealth and specific manufacturer program effectiveness. The department shall deposit the funds received from manufacturers into an expendable trust, in accordance with section 6 of chapter 6A and any applicable regulations, for the purpose of grants to municipalities and regional authorities and shall administer the grant program to municipalities and regional authorities. Manufacturers’ individual contributions shall not exceed their respective market shares of lamps sold in the commonwealth.

(f) Nothing in this section shall prohibit retailers, distributors, wholesalers or any other group from creating and implementing a collection plan for mercury-added lamps or any other mercury-added product.

(g) This section shall not apply to mercury-added button cell batteries, motor vehicles or motor vehicle components.

(h) Mercury-added formulated products intended to be totally consumed in use, such as reagents, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals and other laboratory chemicals, shall be exempt from this section.

(i) This section shall not apply to refurbished medical equipment or products where the only mercury contained in the product comes from a removable mercury-added button cell battery or a mercury-added lamp.

(j) This section shall not apply to mercury-added antique barometers, antique thermometers, and antique clocks if the antique barometer, thermometer or clock was manufactured prior to 1955.

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