During the holidays, Americans throw away 25 percent more trash than any other time of year. From Thanksgiving to New Year's Day, an additional 1 million tons of waste is thrown out each week!
Here are a few environmentally friendly suggestions you can do to help reduce waste during the holiday season.
When buying battery-powered products, choose those that operate on solar power. (Or better yet, choose ones that require no power at all.) And remember,
when buying electronic toys or other portable gifts, include rechargeable batteries with them.
Most batteries can be brought to
HazoHouse. However, HazoHouse no longer
accepts alkaline batteries and has a limit of 3 car
batteries per residential customer, per day.
To find the location of a battery recycler that
accepts alkaline and other batteries, refer to the
Where Do I Take My?...
(Public Works) website. Portable rechargeable batteries can
also be dropped off at many retail locations throughout Thurston County.
To find a location near you, see either the
Where Do I Take My?... or the Call2Recycle® website.
Some batteries (rechargeable, NiCad, lithium, silver oxide, button) can retain a charge; to prevent any problems while storing or transporting the used batteries, place them
individually in a sealed plastic bag, or tape (use electrical, duct, or masking) the terminals.
Avoid purchasing necklaces that contain mercury. Some necklaces from Mexico have a fragile glass pendant with liquid silver mercury and sometimes other
colorful liquids. This jewelry, and any other products with mercury, should not be kept—bring them to
HazoHouse. For additional information on mercury, see
Mercury in Home Products.
Generally gift wrap is non-toxic, but some foil and colored gift-wrap and ribbons may contain lead. Do not burn these products, and do not let babies chew on them. Some wrapping paper can be recycled; better yet, save and reuse.
Bubble lights contain a small amount of methylene chloride, a hazardous chemical also found in paint remover. Keep away from children, as these lights
with their bright colors and bubbling movement can tempt curious children to break the candle-shaped glass. Bring to
HazoHouse for disposal.
Light strands, both for indoor or outdoor use, may contain lead in the PVC wire coating. The lead can rub off on hands and then be swallowed. Some strands have
labels saying they contain lead, in accordance with California’s Proposition 65 law. This law requires products to carry warning labels if they are “known to
the State of California to cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm.” Since these labels are not found on all light strands, the absence of a
label does not mean it is lead-free. Assume all light strands have some lead: have children and adults wash their hands with soap and water after handling
lighting and before eating.
Used Cooking Oil
Thinking of frying a turkey over the holidays? Perhaps
you'll whip up a batch of jelly-filled doughnuts and some latkes for Hanukkah? Or, maybe you're planning something unconventional like a fish fry and clam strips to highlight the area's bounty for your out-of-town guests?
If these, or any other fried delicacy, will be featured on your holiday table, you'll likely have large amounts of used cooking oil that you
won't know what to do with.
Don't let this be a source of holiday stress! Now, you can take your used cooking oil to
HazoHouse for recycling. And don't worry, you've got
plenty of time to get it there; used cooking oil is
Let the oil cool completely, screen it through cheese cloth or a coffee filter to remove any food residue, and return it to its original container.
Take your used cooking oil to HazoHouse Friday
through Tuesday from 8 am to 5 pm. Please do not place
your used cooking oil in the motor oil collection
Used cooking oil taken to HazoHouse is
collected by General Biodiesel, who transports the oil
to their Seattle facility, where it is refined and
recycled into biodiesel. General Biodiesel fuels are
sold and distributed regionally.
For additional information,
click here or call (360) 867-2664.
Other Green Holiday Links