The holiday season provides each of us with a great opportunity to help protect the environment. Don't let it go to waste!
Reducing, reusing, and recycling is especially important this time of year because the amount of garbage generated by a typical Minnesotan increases by about 25% between Thanksgiving and New Year's.
The Recycling Partnership has made a list (they've checked it twice) of efforts and gifts that help the environment:
- Buy wrapping paper made with recycled materials and that will also be recyclable.
- Put out recycling bins or boxes during parties. Make it easy for guests to recycle glass bottles, cans, etc. by putting labeled recycling containers next to the trash can.
- Recycle your cardboard. After unwrapping gifts, be sure to break down the boxes and put them in your recycling cart.
- Give the gift of an experience, like concert tickets, a long weekend out of town, or a donation to their favorite charity in their name.
- Shop sustainably. Consider choosing brands that are made with ocean plastic, reused fibers, or recycled paper.
- Bring a reusable shopping bag when you head to the grocery store or mall.
- Upgrade to new Christmas lights and recycle the old. New LED holiday lights are much more energy efficient than previous versions. But be sure to keep old or broken light strings out of the waste stream, where they can create problems, by properly recycling them. Light strings and extension cords can be dropped off for recycling at a variety of locations throughout Minnesota. For a list, visit Recycle-your-Holidays.org.