Environmentally-Friendly Ways To Dispose Of Your Christmas Tree

January 3, 2020

© Omar Sheriff | Dreamstime

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The holidays are over and soon, if you haven’t already, your Christmas tree will make its exit from your home. Sadly, the once beloved Christmas tree becomes one of the biggest pieces of trash you’ll have to deal with all year. But it doesn't have to end up in a landfill. Homeowners and home renters can simply place the tree out with the other yard waste for pickup.  Just make sure all ornaments and decorations have been removed. Large trees (larger than the standard 6 - 7 ft. tree) may need to be cut in half to be acceptable by your garbage hauler. If you are an apartment dwellers, you can take it to any county recycling center so that they may be turned into mulch, which keeps trapped carbon from re-entering the atmosphere as each Christmas tree contains about 20 pounds it removed from the atmosphere over the course of its lifetime!  Contact your favorite animal sanctuary and see if they are seeking Christmas trees for rescued animals.  In many cases, they are wonderful toys and lions and tigers reportedly react to Christmas trees the same way their smaller cousins respond to catnip, and will bat around the branches for hours. Stick it in your backyard for birds to enjoy. You can even chuck it into a pond or lake and revitalize your favorite fishing hole—although you might want to check with your local fish and game department first. As for artificial Christmas trees, it contributes about 40 pounds of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere in its manufacturing and transportation. The key to making it sustainable is to reuse it. By spreading that 40 pounds out over a certain number of years, estimates range from five years to twenty, it eventually will break even with the smaller impact you would see from buying a new natural tree year after year. So, if your tree is fake, your mission is simple: Box it up and save it for the next year. And the next. And the one after that. Bequeath it to your children and make it a family heirloom. When you finally need to get rid of it, do your best to recycle or donate it.

SOURCE: Popular Science

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