DTE Energy customers turn in over 1,000 old refrigerators
DTE Energy began dismantling more than 1,000 old refrigerators
turned in by customers of its Detroit Edison subsidiary
as part of a “cash for clunkers” appliance recycling
program the company launched in June. The appliances
are being dismantled at a newly opened recycling plant
in Livonia, Michigan.
DTE Energy’s appliance recycling program offers Detroit
Edison customers $50 for their older model refrigerators
and freezers and hauls them away for free.
Since 2001, federal standards require new refrigerators
and freezers to consume less energy. Current models use
about 450 kilowatt-hours (kWh) annually, compared to
older units that use up to 1,500 kWh per year.
Located in Livonia, the new recycling plant is expected
to recycle more than 50,000 old, working refrigerators
and freezers over the next three years – 30,000 of which
will come from DTE Energy customers. The plant, which
will create 20 new Michigan green jobs, is owned and
operated by JACO Environmental, the company contracted
to recycle the appliances. JACO Environmental will demanufacture
the refrigerators using a mechanized process that prevents
toxic oils, mercury and greenhouse gasses from escaping.
Approximately 95 percent of each appliance will be recycled,
keeping that material out of landfills.
Both refrigerators and freezers are eligible for the
recycling program. The program is limited to removal
of two units per household. Appliances to be recycled
must be in working order with an inside measurement of
10 cubic feet or more.