Did you know that during Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve, household waste increases by 25 percent, adding an additional one million tons of waste per week during this season? And what should you really do with your Christmas tree? When the time comes to face holiday clean-up, keep in mind these Earth-friendly resources and tips for how to dispose of your holiday waste.

Solano County Recycling Guide: Click Here

Earth911.com offers a very handy Recycling Search to search for locations to take your recyclables! Simply type in the item that you are looking to recycle in the search bar and your zip code. Get instant results that indicate which local municipality disposes of this items and how they prefer you dispose of it.

Christmas Trees:

Most cities in Solano County have curbside pick-up on specific dates in early January. Find your town’s dates and give them a call to schedule your pick-up. To prepare your tree for collection, remove all tinsel, ornaments, lights, and stands, including wooden stands. Trees sprayed with artificial snow, unfortunately, cannot be composted and must be placed in your black bin or left curbside to be collected as trash.

Several Boy Scout troops will also be picking up trees this year. Check your local cities’ troop website for individual tree collection schedules.

Holiday Lights:

Check your local hardware store, like Lowe’s or Home Depot who also offer Christmas light recycling for their customers.

Visit Earth911.com to see which recycling center near you in accepting Christmas lights as e-waste this year.

Wrapping Paper:

This may come as a surprise but wrapping paper isn’t entirely just paper and does not go in your recycle bin! Many standard rolls are coated with a thin, glossy plastic coating rendering it unrecyclable. Instead of scooping up crumbled piles of this stuff into your already overflowing garbage bins, consider re-using it for package stuffing to protect your holiday gifts in transit. Click here for 20 Ways to Reuse Gift Wrap.

Christmas Cards:

We all love receiving them but many cards are decorated with sparkly, festive materials like glitter glue, jewels and foam décor making these cards unrecyclable. Here are some alternatives to simply storing your Christmas cards in a shoe box or bin never to see the light of day again or having them end up in the trash:

  • Re-use the front of the card! Cut in half, still saving your personalized message if you wish, and simply paste the card front on a blank card for re-use.
  • Cut out your favorite images and pieces and attach them to a holiday gift box or wrapped gift for an extra festive touch!

Local Efforts:

Republic Services’ Reuse Round-Up: On Saturday, December 16th from 9am-1pm, drop off your gently used clothing, housewares, bicycles, toys, games, and costume jewelry at Benicia High School, 1101 Military West, (at main steps to office) and help a local charity. Donations will go to “Faith Food Fridays,” a nonprofit serving the less fortunate of Solano County. Please, NO mattresses, large furniture, electronics, stuffed animals, or overly worn items. For more information, contact Marie Knutson at mknutson@republicservices.com or (925) 671-5814.