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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

116.92 MERCURY EMISSIONS REDUCTION.
    Subdivision 1. Sales. A person may not sell mercury to another person in this state without
providing a material safety data sheet, as defined in United States Code, title 42, section 11049,
and requiring the purchaser to sign a statement that the purchaser:
(1) will use the mercury only for a medical, dental, instructional, research, or manufacturing
purpose; and
(2) understands the toxicity of mercury and will appropriately store and use it and will not
place, or allow anyone under the purchaser's control to place, the mercury in the solid waste
stream or in a wastewater disposal system, as defined in section 115.01, subdivision 4.
    Subd. 2. Use of mercury. A person who uses mercury in any application may not place,
or deliver the mercury to another person who places residues, particles, scrapings, or other
materials that contain mercury in solid waste or wastewater, except for traces of materials that
may inadvertently pass through a filtration system during a dental procedure.
    Subd. 3. Labeling; products containing mercury. (a) A manufacturer or wholesaler may
not sell and a retailer may not knowingly sell any of the following items in this state that contain
mercury unless the item is labeled in a manner to clearly inform a purchaser or consumer that
mercury is present in the item and that the item may not be placed in the garbage until the
mercury is removed and reused, recycled, or otherwise managed to ensure that it does not become
part of solid waste or wastewater:
(1) a thermostat or thermometer;
(2) an electric switch, individually or as part of another product, other than a motor vehicle;
(3) an appliance;
(4) a medical or scientific instrument;
(5) an electric relay or other electrical device;
(6) a fluorescent or high-intensity discharge lamp, individually or as part of another product;
and
(7) laboratory chemicals, reagents, fixatives, and electrodes.
    (b) Labeling of items in accordance with mercury product labeling plans approved by another
state that is a member of the Interstate Mercury Education and Reduction Clearinghouse (IMERC)
shall be considered to be in compliance with this section. The manufacturer shall provide a copy
of the labeling plan to the agency and shall notify the agency if the approval is modified.
    (c) Manufacturers of products that contain a mercury-containing lamp not intended to be
replaceable by the user or consumer shall meet the product labeling requirements of this section
by placing the label on the product or in the care and use manual or product instructions.
    Subd. 4. Removal from service; products containing mercury. (a) When an item listed
in subdivision 3 is removed from service the mercury in the item must be reused, recycled, or
otherwise managed to ensure compliance with section 115A.932.
(b) A person who is in the business of replacing or repairing an item listed in subdivision
3 in households shall ensure, or deliver the item to a facility that will ensure, that the mercury
contained in an item that is replaced or repaired is reused or recycled or otherwise managed in
compliance with section 115A.932.
(c) A person may not crush a motor vehicle unless the person has first made a good faith
effort to remove all of the mercury switches in the motor vehicle.
    Subd. 5. Thermostats. A manufacturer of thermostats that contain mercury or that may
replace thermostats that contain mercury shall, in addition to the requirements of subdivision 3,
provide incentives for and sufficient information to purchasers and consumers of the thermostats
for the purchasers or consumers to ensure that mercury in thermostats being removed from service
is reused or recycled or otherwise managed in compliance with section 115A.932. A manufacturer
that has complied with this subdivision is not liable for improper disposal by purchasers or
consumers of thermostats.
    Subd. 5a. Displacement relays. (a) A manufacturer of a displacement relay that contains
mercury is responsible for the costs of collecting and managing its displacement relays to ensure
that the relays do not become part of the solid waste stream.
(b) A manufacturer of a displacement relay that contains mercury shall, in addition to the
requirements of subdivision 3, provide incentives for, and sufficient information to, purchasers
and consumers of the relay to ensure that the relay does not become part of the waste stream.
A manufacturer that has complied with this subdivision is not liable for improper disposal by
purchasers or consumers of its relays.
(c) A manufacturer subject to this subdivision, or an organization of such manufacturers and
its officers, members, employees, and agents, may participate in projects or programs to collect
and properly manage waste displacement relays. Any person who participates in such a project or
program is immune from liability under state law relating to antitrust, restraint of trade, unfair
trade practices, and other regulation of trade or commerce for activities related to the collection
and management of the relays under this subdivision.
(d) For the purposes of this subdivision, a "displacement relay" means an electric flow
control device having one or more poles that contain metallic mercury and a plunger which, when
energized by a magnetic field, moves into a pool of mercury, displacing the mercury sufficiently
to create a closed electrical circuit.
    Subd. 6. Mercury thermometers prohibited. (a) A manufacturer, wholesaler, or retailer
may not sell or distribute at no cost a thermometer containing mercury that was manufactured
after June 1, 2001.
(b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to:
(1) an electronic thermometer with a battery containing mercury if the battery is in
compliance with section 325E.125;
(2) a mercury thermometer used for food research and development or food processing,
including meat, dairy products, and pet food processing;
(3) a mercury thermometer that is a component of an animal agriculture climate control
system or industrial measurement system until such time as the system is replaced or a
nonmercury component for the system is available; or
(4) a mercury thermometer used for calibration of other thermometers, apparatus, or
equipment, unless a nonmercury calibration standard is approved for the application by the
National Institute of Standards and Technology.
    Subd. 7. Fluorescent and high intensity discharge lamps; large use applications. (a) A
person who sells fluorescent or high intensity discharge lamps that contain mercury to the owner
or manager of an industrial, commercial, office, or multiunit residential building, or to any person
who replaces or removes from service outdoor lamps that contain mercury, shall clearly inform
the purchaser in writing on the invoice for the lamps, or in a separate writing, that the lamps
contain mercury, a hazardous substance that is regulated by federal or state law and that they may
not be placed in solid waste. This paragraph does not apply to a person who incidentally sells
fluorescent or high intensity discharge lamps at retail to the specified purchasers.
(b) A person who contracts with the owner or manager of an industrial, commercial, office,
or multiunit residential building, or with a person responsible for outdoor lighting, to remove
from service fluorescent or high intensity discharge lamps that contain mercury shall clearly
inform, in writing, the person for whom the work is being done that the lamps being removed
from service contain mercury and what the contractor's arrangements are for the management of
the mercury in the removed lamps.
    Subd. 7a. Fluorescent and high-intensity discharge lamps; residential applications. (a)
Any information regarding fluorescent and high-intensity discharge lamps containing mercury
that is sent by a utility to a customer, present on a utility's Web site, or contained in a utility's
print, radio, or video advertisement, must:
(1) state that the lamps contain mercury;
(2) state that mercury is harmful to the environment;
(3) state that placing the lamps in garbage is illegal; and
(4) provide a toll-free telephone number or Web site that customers can access to learn
how to lawfully dispose of the lamps.
(b) The information under paragraph (a) must be:
(1) provided in a minimum of 12-point type in print or online media; and
(2) provided in a manner that the ordinary consumer will understand that fluorescent and
high-intensity discharge lamps contain mercury and must not be placed in garbage in Minnesota.
    (c) A television or radio advertisement regarding fluorescent and high-intensity discharge
lamps containing mercury must prominently convey the information that the lamps contain
mercury and must be recycled.
    Subd. 8. Ban; toys, games, and apparel. A person may not sell for resale or at retail in
this state a toy or game that contains mercury, or an item of clothing or wearing apparel that is
exempt from sales tax under section 297A.67, subdivision 8, that contains an electric switch
that contains mercury.
    Subd. 8a. Ban; mercury manometers. After June 30, 1997, mercury manometers for use on
dairy farms may not be sold or installed, nor may mercury manometers in use on dairy farms be
repaired. After December 31, 2000, all mercury manometers on dairy farms must be removed
from use.
    Subd. 8b. Ban; mercury-containing sphygmomanometers. After August 1, 2007, a person
may not sell, offer for sale, distribute, install, or reinstall in the state a sphygmomanometer
containing mercury.
    Subd. 8c. Ban; mercury-containing gastrointestinal devices. After August 1, 2007, a
person may not sell, offer for sale, distribute, or use in the state an esophageal dilator, bougie tube,
gastrointestinal tube, feeding tube, or similar device containing mercury.
    Subd. 8d. Ban; mercury-containing thermostats. After August 1, 2007, a person may
not sell, offer for sale, distribute, install, or reinstall in the state a product or device that uses a
mercury switch to sense and control room temperature through communication with heating,
ventilating, or air-conditioning equipment. This subdivision does not apply to a thermostat used to
sense and control temperature as part of a manufacturing process.
    Subd. 8e. Ban; mercury-containing switches and relays. (a) After August 1, 2007, a
person may not sell, offer for sale, or distribute in the state a mercury switch or mercury relay
individually or as part of another product.
(b) For the purposes of this subdivision:
(1) "mercury relay" means a mercury-containing product or device that opens or closes
electrical contacts to affect the operation of other devices in the same or another electrical circuit
and includes, but is not limited to, mercury displacement relays, mercury wetted reed relays, and
mercury contact relays; and
(2) "mercury switch" means a mercury-containing product or device that opens or closes an
electrical circuit or gas valve and includes, but is not limited to, mercury float switches actuated
by rising or falling liquid levels, mercury tilt switches actuated by a change in the switch position,
mercury pressure switches actuated by a change in pressure, mercury temperature switches
actuated by a change in temperature, and mercury flame sensors. A mercury switch does not
include a mercury-added thermostat or a mercury diostat.
    (c) A manufacturer shall be in compliance with this subdivision if:
    (1) it has received an exclusion or exemption from a state that is a member of the Interstate
Mercury Education and Reduction Clearinghouse (IMERC) for replacement parts or for a use
where no feasible alternative is available;
    (2) it submits a copy of the approved exclusion or exemption to the commissioner; and
    (3) it meets all of the requirements in the approved exclusion or exemption for its activities
within the state.
    Subd. 8f. Ban; mercury diostats. After January 1, 2008, a person may not sell, offer for
sale, or distribute a new gas oven, range, or stove containing a mercury-containing switch that
controls a gas valve in an oven or oven portion of a gas range or stove.
    Subd. 8g. Ban; mercury-containing barometers, manometers, and pyrometers. After
January 1, 2008, a person may not sell, offer for sale, or distribute in the state a mercury-containing
device used for measuring atmospheric pressure or for measuring pressure of liquids and gases
or a mercury-containing device used for measuring the temperature of extremely hot materials,
individually or as part of another product.
    Subd. 8h. Ban; mercury in over-the-counter pharmaceuticals. After January 1, 2008, a
person may not sell, offer for sale, or distribute in the state for human use an over-the-counter
pharmaceutical product containing mercury.
    Subd. 8i. Ban; mercury in cosmetics, toiletries, and fragrances. After January 1, 2008,
a person may not sell, offer for sale, or distribute in the state a cosmetic, toiletry, or fragrance
product containing mercury.
    Subd. 8j. Exclusion for existing equipment. The prohibitions in subdivisions 8b to 8g do
not apply if a switch, relay, or measuring device is used to replace a switch, relay, or measuring
device that is a component of a larger product in use prior to January 1, 2008, provided the owner
of that equipment has made every reasonable effort to determine that no compatible nonmercury
replacement component exists.
    Subd. 9. Enforcement; generators of household hazardous waste. (a) A violation of
subdivision 2 or 4, paragraph (a), by a generator of household hazardous waste, as defined in
section 115A.96, or a violation of subdivision 8 by a person selling at retail, is not subject to
enforcement under section 115.071, subdivision 3.
(b) An administrative penalty imposed under section 116.072 for a violation of subdivision 2
or 4, paragraph (a), by a generator of household hazardous waste, as defined in section 115A.96,
or for a violation of subdivision 8 by a person selling at retail, may not exceed $700.
    Subd. 10. Definition of mercury-containing. For the purposes of this section,
"mercury-containing" or "containing mercury" means that the product, component of a product,
or chemical formulation contains intentionally added mercury.
History: 1992 c 560 s 3; 1992 c 603 s 37; 1993 c 249 s 28; 1994 c 585 s 38; 1995 c 247
art 1 s 43; 1997 c 62 s 2,3; 1997 c 216 s 116; 2000 c 418 art 1 s 44; 2001 c 47 s 1; 2006 c
201 s 2; 2007 c 109 s 2-13