There’s More To ‘Green’ Than Your Tree

Holiday tips from the city of Fayetteville

The holiday season is upon us and with it comes excess trash from most households as they deal with parties, presents and other holiday activities.
Since Fayetteville operates a Pay-As-You-Throw residential trash program, managing this extra volume can prove somewhat of a challenge. But remember, 2010 extra bag stickers can be used through Jan. 13 for holiday times.
The city’s recycling markets requests that no wrapping paper or tissue paper be collected with our mixed paper because of contamination with tape, glitter, etc. However, synthetic foam packing peanuts and possibly bubble wrap can be taken to most mailing companies. Please check with them before bringing this type of material to them. Here are some helpful hints as we go through this busy period of the year.
• Be creative with no wrap options. Hide that large, unwieldy gift somewhere in the house or yard. Give the recipient a card with a series of clues leading to the present.
• Wrap gifts in materials that can be reused, such as baskets, tins, scarves, and handkerchiefs.
• Gift bags are an attractive, reusable alternative to wrapping paper.
• Newspaper comic pages and magazines make unique gift wrap and they’re recyclable. Old posters, maps and blueprints work also.
• If you purchase gift wrap, look for paper with a high percentage of post-consumer recycled content.
• Unwrap gifts carefully. Dedicate a collection area for gift wrap trim, and boxes to be reused next year.
• Instead of synthetic foam packing peanuts and bubble wrap, cushion gifts with recyclable newsprint, plastic grocery bags, unbuttered popcorn or corn-based packing peanuts that disintegrate in water.
• Save and reuse packing peanuts that you receive or donate them to a local mailing and shipping store.
• Avoid the holiday mail bottleneck by sending an electronic greeting card via the Internet.
• Cut up and use past holiday cards as gift tags.
• Give gifts such as movie passes or donations to organizations on behalf of someone.
• Avoid disposables. Serve your holiday guests with reusable plates, cups and utensils.
• Artificial trees can be used year after year.
If you live in a single family home in Fayetteville, the city will collect and compost your live Christmas trees. Place trees with no tinsel, lights, ornaments or other decorations out on your normal collection day until Jan. 13 for this disposal option. Fayetteville residents can bring Christmas trees to the compost facility during normal operating hours for composting free of charge.
Always try to use rechargeable batteries for all your new gifts. This reduces disposal problems with regular batteries.
The Fayetteville recycling drop off located in front of the Solid Waste and Recycling offices at 1560 S. Happy Hollow Road is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week for those wanting to drop off extra recyclables from holiday activities.
Do you have extra electronic scrap items such as old computers or televisions that need to be recycled after the holidays? If so, call the Washington County Environmental Affairs Office at 444-1725 for recycling options.
For more information about solid waste and recycling services please contact the Solid Waste and Recycling Office at 575-8398 or visit us at and look under the Solid Waste and Recycling page.

Categories: Features