• Joe C.

What can you recycle during Christmas!

Americans throw away 25% more trash during the Thanksgiving to New Year's holiday period than any other time of year. The extra waste amounts to 25 million tons of garbage, or about 1 million extra tons per week!

If every family reused just two feet of holiday ribbon, the 38,000 miles of ribbon saved could tie a bow around the entire planet. If every American family wrapped just 3 presents in re-used materials, it would save enough paper to cover 45,000 football fields. The 2.65 billion Christmas cards sold each year in the U.S. could fill a football field 10 stories high. If we each sent one card less, we’d save 50,000 cubic yards of paper.

Below is a list of ways you can recycle during the Christmas Holidays:

Wrapping Paper

Check on your local recycling center website to see if it accepts wrapping paper – if so, follow the scrunch test! If it stays scrunched up it can be recycled – if not, put it in the general waste bin.

Remove sellotape before recycling.

Consider saving your wrapping paper so that you can reuse it next year.


We use over 300,000 tons of cardboard during the holidays (equivalent to 23 Adult African Bush Elephants). You can either re-use the cardboard boxes for next year, or compact and haul away te cardboard to your nearest local recycling center.

Christmas Trees

If you have a real christmas trees the tree can be recycled into wood chippings. Usually Home Depot, Lowes and some city parks have Christmas Tree Recycle Drop Off's. Confirm first before dropping off your christmas tree to these locations to prevent wasting time and getting a ticket for illegally dumping.


Luckily, most of our Christmas decorations can be reused year-on-year. For those that are completely worn out, some can be recycled:

Wreaths can go into your garden waste as long as they don’t have glitter or glue on them.

Fairy lights are classed as waste electrical and electronic equipment

and should go to your local household waste recycling centre, not into the general bin.

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