We all know that recycling paper bags or bottles is relatively easy; one phone call to a collecting company and it's all taken care of. But, besides homeowners, giant corporations also have to dispose of complicated pieces of technology, such as server and surveillance room equipment, large heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) systems, cooling towers, flooring or generators. Dismantling these items is very complicated and requires more than a simple recycling and processing center.
Green Recycling Co. is one of the few companies in the United States that deal with handling this type of items. They are not in the business of picking up plastic bags, but rather neutralizing and recycling thousands of tons of acid from batteries, and their adjacent lead, as well as processing HVAC systems that weigh tons. According to Frank LoMonaco, company founder and engineer, staying in business is very difficult in this line of work, mostly because of the high costs involved in handling such items.
That's why this particular company does not take money from its customers. "We waive fees for our customers. Most sustainability directors that I talk to say that is a roadblock for them, they might not have the revenue at that time to do it otherwise," LoMonaco told LiveScience.
Among other things, the engineer is fond of "actually making sure that everything possible is reused to put back into recirculation, so we can move forward with whatever it is, not to just be thrown away and discarded. My excitement is just protecting what we should hold close to our hearts, which is the environment. I'm a small part of trying to make it right."
"Life goes by so fast, we don't know what it's going to bring. We need to focus on what is real, and our environment is real. This was just an innovative idea. Innovation is human invention of the mind that incorporates the future of success. We need to be good stewards," he added.
During some of their latest contracts, the company staff was involved in recycling 80,000 tons of steel and concrete, belonging to a former airplane hangar, worked with a South Carolina company to remove their entire water treatment basins and HVAC systems, and removed 42,000 pounds of lead from a large number of batteries owned by Nortel, among other things.