It's interesting how some people think something is common knowledge, and then many many others have never even heard of the issue. My bit for getting the word out:
Batteries are toxic waste (because of their heavy metal content).
As I haven't lived in the States for a while, I'm not sure what the rules there are, but in France, any store that sells batteries is obliged to take the used ones back. And while it might be the case that accumulated waste batteries still go into trash instead of their heavy metal components being recovered, at least they go into the 'toxic trash' stream, where disposal regulations are stricter (one hopes!)
For information and a disposal guide, click here.
When I lived in LA, Vons stores had a bin for them at the front. Most major grocery chains do; you just have to look.
It's the little things we do every day that can make this world a better (or worse) place!
9 hours ago