Olmsted: "Because they have small amounts of mercury, they should be saved an brought to either your towns hazardous waste collection day or drop off center, or brought to a store that takes them back, such as Whole Foods on River Street, Tags Hardware in Porter Square, or Dickson Brothers in Harvard Square (to name a few). Click here for Cambridge's guide to recycling bulbs. If you compare both bulbs over their life cycles, the amount of mercury associated with the CFL bulb is lower (it is just inside of the bulb). Because incandescent bulbs use much more electricity and fossil fuel power plants release mercury into the atmosphere to power the bulbs, the amount of mercury released into the environment to power a traditional bulb is MORE THAN the amount of mercury in a CFL bulb. So get a CFL and make sure to dispose of it correctly when it dies."
(Mark Wilson/Globe Staff)