Most lighting professionals know the dangers of compact fluorescent lamps after their useful lives – mercury remaining in the lamp can leak in landfills and leave a lasting and permanent mar on the earth. In order to help combat this unfortunate aspect of an energy-saving light source, Home Depot has started a recycling program for CFL's at all 1,973 of their stores in the US, creating the largest and most widespread recycling program for CFL's to date.
From a lighting designer's point of view, it's great to save energy (and $$$) by using CFL's, but they're definitely not the prettiest source available for the home. Nowadays I guess it might be fashionable to surpass cost for beauty – but I work in an industry that consumes electricity like electricians consume beers, so beauty is often the more important aspect of a light source. Don't get me wrong, the usefulness of CFL's can help the average household can save between $12 and $20 per month by switching to CFL's.
Check out the excellent article from the New York Times on Home Depot's program here.
Home Depot's EcoOptions page is here, check it out!