For most of us, that means our only option is to mail them to a recycling company, as well as pay a small fee to that company.
I hope retailers who read this will start offering to collect alkalines from their customers as an extra service, and then ship the batteries to the recyclers by freight.
Don't try to use it againit's just gonna continue leaking.
If an alkaline leaked, clean up as much of the solid or liquid matter as you can with tissue paper and/or cotton swabs.
Alkalines perform poorly at subfreezing temperatures (reduced capacity), as this chart from Energizer (PDF) shows.
Nickel Zinc and Lithium are better for below-freezing applications.
Rechargeable Lithium-Ions are not available in AAA-D sizes, though they're available in the 9V size. At cool temperatures (68°F, 20°C), a lithium battery will retain 90% of its charge for about 15 years.
After that, use cotton swabs with vinegar or lemon juice.
The acid will neutralize the leaked alkaline material to prevent further corrosion. (If using one of those, wear safety glasses, so you don't flick the solution into your eyes.) Temperature.
Alkalines became popular in the 1970's, as a high-capacity replacement for wimpy Carbon Zinc batteries (e.g., "Heavy Duty" and "General Purpose" batteries).
Alkalines last 2-11x as long as these older batteries.
That's not too much of a problem, because there's not much difference in capacity from brand to brand (as long as you're comparing standard to standard, and high drain to high drain).