During the holiday season, Americans throw away more material than at any other time of the year. According the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the volume of household waste in the United States generally increases 25 percent between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, approximately 1 million extra ton.
Santa Rosa County encourages residents to “Reduce, Recycle and Reuse” materials during the holiday season in these simple ways suggested by the EPA:
Recycle Live Christmas Trees – Live Christmas trees can be dropped off until Monday, Jan. 19 at five county tree recycling areas. The trees will be chipped and offered as free mulch at Clean Community System in Milton at a later date to be announced. When dropping off trees, please place the trees in the designated area identified by signage. Trees can be disposed at:
- Clean Community System/Green-Up Nursery, 6758 Park Ave., Milton
- Jay Transfer Station, Transfer Station Road, Jay
- Navarre Beach Boat Ramp Parking Lot Recycle Area, Gulf Boulevard., Navarre Beach
- Tiger Point Recreation Area in Gulf Breeze, east of Walmart
- Pace Volunteer Fire Department, 4773 Pace Patriot Blvd., Pace
Recycle – Glass, metal, plastic containers, paper and cardboard can be recycled with curbside collections by residential garbage collection service and taking the items to the Central Landfill in Milton or the Jay Residential Drop of Station in Jay.
Give Creatively – Give gifts that require little or no packaging, such as the gift of your time (cooking, babysitting or gardening), a charitable donation or tickets to an event.
Reduce Shopping Bags – When going shopping, bring reusable cloth bags or tell store clerks you don’t need a bag for small or oversized purchases. Or combine your purchases into one bag rather than getting a new bag at each store. Thousands of paper and plastic shopping bags end up in landfills every year.
Use Reusable Dishware – Avoid using disposable dishes and utensils when entertaining friends and family, and if you must use them, buy them made from recycled or compostable material. Remember to place easily identifiable recycling and compost containers at your celebration so guests can recycle soda cans, bottles, and paper products and compost food scraps.
Reuse Gift Wrapping – Use cool wrapping materials. Reuse maps, the Sunday comics, and posters. Wrap gifts without a box. And remember to save ribbons, bows and bags to reuse next year.
Questions? Contact the Santa Rosa County Environmental Department at (850) 981-7135.
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