Recycling your Christmas waste
With the festive season now in full swing, thoughts may already be turning to the post-holiday lull. So much preparation goes into Christmas, but the hard work doesn’t stop when the day passes. After the holidays there are decorations to be taken down, furniture to reset and abnormal amounts of waste. The waste generated during the holidays can be difficult to manage, so we’re offering some tips on getting rid of your rubbish responsibly for a greener Christmas.
Once you have opened your gifts you will probably have metres of wrapping paper to dispose of. There is a temptation to throw all packaging into your blue bin but be conscious what paper types you throw out. A lot of modern glossy and laminated paper can’t be recycled. The same applies to wire mesh and ribbons attached to gifts. You should consider using recyclable paper or gift bags when giving.
As your online shopping increases you will also have more and more cardboard to sort through. Fold down boxes as they arrive to save space at home and remove plastic or metal ties. Generally tape on boxes can be removed at the point of reaching recycling centres. ReGen Waste use advanced machinery and processes to separate multiple types of waste to ensure that contamination of waste streams is reduced and the minimum amount of waste is sent to landfill.
Understandably many families use disposable plates, knives and forks during the holidays. If that is the case, try to shop consciously and be sure to buy recyclable options. While a lot of paper plates may be unfit for your blue bin, you may find they are fit for composting. This can also apply to kitchen towels – make sure to check the specific details for compost-compatible products on your local council’s website.
When the season comes to an end and it’s time to take down your decorations, think green. If you’ve opted for a real tree, return it to your local drop off point. Plastic trees can be collected by some councils, often though they end in landfill. It may be too late for this year, but in Christmas 2018 consider a real tree.
If you think your decorations are spent and are need to dispose of them, take care not to mix them with electrical waste. Anything with the WEEE (waste electrical and electronic equipment) Wheelie Bin symbol needs to be left at a household collection centre.
Unfortunately, most Christmas baubles and tinsel cannot be recycled unless you have specifically bought more eco-friendly options. More and more retailers have produced decorations made from recyclable materials, and we also encourage making your own. Coloured paper and online tutorials are a fun alternative to store bought goods.
Natural wreaths can of course make for great compost, but be sure to remove plastic ribbons and lights beforehand.