Have a Green Holiday Season

Reducing Paper Refuse

Curbside Items

Collect all the gift catalogs and newspapers filled with advertising inserts, and include them in your curbside pickup collection with:

  • Plastics
  • Cans
  • Glass

Note: Wrapping paper is not recyclable.

Wrapping Paper Substitutes

  • Be creative by using wrapping paper substitutes such as the Sunday comics or even the sports section for a sports enthusiast. Maps, calendars, and even used blueprint paper work well too.  
  • Design your own wrapping paper using paper shopping bags and decorate them with paints, crayons, markers or stickers.      
  • Be inventive and make your own “cloth wrap” using other decorative items such as:
    • Holiday Cloth Napkins
    • Decorative Scarves
    • Colorful Pillowcases 
    • A giant laundry bag with a necktie or fancy woman’s scarf as the bow  

Repurposing Used Gift Boxes

Make gift boxes even more useful in the future by wrapping tops and bottoms separately and reusing the boxes year after year. There is no need to rip away the wrapping paper. 

Shopping Consciously

Cloth Bags

Shop with a cloth bag, or consolidate all your purchases in one large store bag while shopping. If every household in America reused a bag for just one grocery store trip, for example, we would save an estimated 60,000 trees!

Thoughtful Gifts

Buy gifts that will result in waste prevention. Items that prevent waste are the gifts that will be kindest to the environment. This is a great chance for you to be creative! Examples include:

  • Distinctive mugs for friends at the office can cut down on the number of paper and polystyrene cups thrown away.  
  • Quality razors will mean fewer disposable razors in the landfill. 
  • Gifts in kind such as dinner out, tickets to a sports event or concert, or even lottery tickets also reduce waste.

Entertaining During the Holidays

  • If you are entertaining this holiday season, practice environmentally-friendly partying: 
  • Use reusable plates and eating utensils and napkins instead of single-use items.  
    • Inexpensive plastic plates and utensils that are dishwasher safe are better than one-time-use items.
    • You might want to select a menu that minimizes the need for using plates and utensils such as festive finger foods.
  • Rent or borrow party items that you seldom use like platters, warming trays, punch bowls, etc. 
    • This may save money and space also.  
  • Set up recycling containers for guests to use and label them for reusable utensils, bottles, cans, etc.  
  • If you compost, set up a collection container for items that can go into the compost pile.  

Christmas Tree Collection

Learn how to recycle your Christmas tree curbside.