Trunkline Magazine (Louisville Zoo) December 2018 - Page 21

KIDS FOR CONSERVATION RE-think the Holidays By Karen Maynard, Public Education Coordinator, Dept. of Public Works We might not think about it, but the holiday season can gener- ate a lot of trash — from dispos- able dinnerware at parties to the explosion of wrapping paper after opening gifts! Trying to not cre- ate trash in the first place can be difficult and takes some planning, but it can have the biggest impact on the environment. When you do have trash, train your brain to think about ways you can reuse it before you toss it. All it takes is a little creativity! But when you really need to dispose of something for good, recycle if you can. Let’s RE-think the holidays this year and give each other and the environment the gift of less waste! Here are some ideas to get started: • While shopping, bring your own bags! Better yet, give gifts in reusable shopping bags to encourage your loved ones to do the same. Get even more creative with your wrapping and use scarves, old maps, newsprint, or paper bags. Cut pictures from last year’s holiday greeting cards to use as this year’s gift tags. • If you’re an online shopper, you might end up with a lot of cardboard boxes. Reuse them as gift boxes, or if you must dis- pose, make sure you flatten and recycle. If you have a lot or very large pieces, you can take them to a drop-off recycling location. Go to for a map of those locations. • If you’re replacing old electronic devices, make sure to sell, do- nate, or recycle your old ones. Electronics can be recycled at the Waste Reduction Center, 636 Meriwether Avenue. • Holiday parties don’t have to generate so much waste — Save and reuse decorations. Plan ahead and only prepare the food you’ll need. Provide real plates, cups, and cutlery. Label a recy- cling container for guests to use. Tell your guests you’re reducing waste this year; they’ll likely be happy to participate! • When the holidays are over, make sure to compost that real Christmas tree! If you have yard waste collection service at home, take your tree to the curb. Make sure all the lights and ornaments are removed first! Did you know? • Large Styrofoam packag- ing inserts can be recycled at Foam Fabricators at 950 Progress Blvd. in New Albany. The pieces must be clean and free of tape, stick- ers, and labels. • Holiday string lights that don’t work anymore can be dropped off at metal recy- cling facilities. But don’t put them in your curbside bin — they can get caught in the gears at the sorting facility. • You can recycle wrapping paper, tissue paper, gift bags, and greeting cards. But try to reuse or re-pur- pose those items first! • Not sure what’s recyclable or how to dispose of some- thing? There’s an app for that, of course! Download Louisville’s Recycle Coach app for disposal informa- tion, collection reminders, and more! Louisville Zoo Trunkline • Winter 2018 • 21