Pacific Swell | Southern California environment news and trends

Orange crush: One million refrigerators recycled in Southern California

Southern California Edison and the Environmental Protection Agency recently announced a local recycling milestone: One million refrigerators crushed as part of the EPA’s ongoing Responsible Appliance Disposal Program. Making SoCal Edison the first utility to reach the one million mark, the occasion was celebrated last week at an Appliance Recycling Center of America in Compton, California. 

“It’s about the customers. Californians are educated, motivated and care about the environment,” said EPA regional administrator Jared Blumenfeld by phone about the accomplishment. “People here understand the relationship between energy consumption and air quality, and want to do their part in tipping the balance.”  

Blumenfeld also cites the ease of the SoCal program as opposed to other cities, where recycling an old refrigerator is much more of a chore.

“There are cities where only the first 500 customers have their refrigerators recycled,” he explained. “After that, they had to wait until the following year. With this program, the waiting list was generally less than day before someone came out and picked up that appliance. It’s a really exemplary scenario.

“It’s also financially convenient,” Blumenfeld added. “Old refrigerators drain energy and are expensive to maintain. This way, someone takes it off your hands, and gives you $35 dollars for your trouble.”

If you have an old refrigerator or freezer taking up space somewhere that could use a good crushing, visit or call 800-324-9722 to make it happen.

For Southern California Edison customers who are feeling lucky, the utility is giving away an Energy Star-qualified refrigerator as a thank-you for reaching the one million mark first. Enter on their Facebook page. Deadline is July 31.