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Remember to recycle this holiday season

  • gift wrap Contributed photo—

Published: 12/21/2018 11:54:56 AM

During the holiday season, the average American family increases household trash volume by over 25 percent, according the the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. A large portion of that trash could be avoided, reused, recycled or composted.

The EPA says reducing holiday waste can help a household save money on “pay-as-you-throw” town trash stickers or bags, save money for the town, reduce trips for trash trucks and reduce people’s carbon footprint.

These items should be recylced:

■gift wrap, tissue paper (no foil, metallic inks, or glitter, but tape is OK) 

■paper gift bags and shopping bags

■greeting cards (except those with foil, glitter, or batteries)

■envelopes (plastic windows are OK)

■catalogs, calendars

■cardboard: corrugated, paperboard

Do not recycle:

■ribbons, bows, tinsel (reuse or trash)

■holiday light strings (acceptable in scrap metal recycling)

■Christmas tree netting

■bubble wrap, packing peanuts, polystyrene (Styrofoam) (clean packing materials accepted for reuse at Greenfield UPS Store)

■plastic bags (clean, dry plastic bags marked #2 or #4 accepted in retail store programs)

■plastic “blister pack” packaging (i.e. from toys and electronics)


To learn more about recycling in our region, visit: for a downloadable guide to recycling on the holidays.

Composting is easy and can greatly decrease waste from holiday meal preparation and serving.

The municipal compost programs at the transfer stations in Bernardston, Greenfield, Leverett, New Salem, Northfield, Orange, Wendell and Whately accept all types of food waste, including meat, bones, cheese and paper waste, such as Chinet paper plates, paper napkins and paper towels.

Tip: Keep a recycle bin or paper bag handy near gift wrapping and unwrapping.

The Solid Waste District sells discounted “Earth Machine” compost bins and “Sure Close” compost pails. Visit: or call the Solid Waste District at 413-772-2438. You can also email: MA Relay for the hearing impaired can be called at 711 or 1-800-439-2370 (TTY/TDD).

Greenfield Recorder

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Greenfield, MA 01302-1367
Phone: (413) 772-0261
Fax: (413) 772-2906


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