Tips for a green post-holiday season

City of Terrace sustainability coordinator Tara Irwin has a few tips for how to keep holiday-made waste from entering area landfills.

By now, many of us have started to minimize our footprint during the holiday season, from avoiding disposable gift wrap, to choosing gifts that have less packaging.

Despite our attempts to minimize excess waste leading up to and during the holidays, there is usually still a bit of the inevitable aftermath: leftover packaging, food, and finding a new home for gadgets, toys and electronics that have been upgraded or replaced.

The good news is that B.C. is a leader for Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) programs, which put the onus on producers to take full responsibility for the collection and recycling of their products and packaging. EPR programs cover everything in B.C. from paint to batteries! B.C.’s expanded electronic-waste programs is the first of its kind in North America.

Below is a quick review of some of the recycling options for the most common items you may need to recycle during the holiday season. This list is by no means exhaustive; please refer to the Recycling Council of BC website for all EPR and recycling options available in the Terrace area.

Batteries & Cell Phones: City Hall (3215 Eby) or see www.call2recycle.ca for a full list of drop-off options. Cardboard, Plastic and Paper Packaging: Waste Management Community Depot (4430 Keith), Do Your Part Recycling (3220 River Dr.)

Electronics, bottles and most countertop appliances: Terrace Bottle & Return-It Depot (3100 Kalum) Used furniture, building materials and working appliances: Core Store (3111 Kalum Street – Coop Property)

Take notice of what is leftover this holiday season. Are you still producing more waste than during other times of the year? Feeling a little overwhelmed by the amount of stuff you have received?

Start talking now among friends and family to come up with alternative gift ideas for next holiday season (i.e. experiences versus physical presents) and ways to further reduce the amount of waste produced in your household throughout 2013.

Contributed by Tara Irwin, City of Terrace sustainability coordinator.