Here’s how to spend a “green” vacation at Hilliard

Did you know that the average American throws away 25% more “stuff” between Thanksgiving and New Years?

And the vast majority of this increase goes to our landfills?

Are you looking to reduce this number in your household?

Here are some ideas:

• Buy and cook only what you and your family really need. Do you eat leftover turkey for three weeks?

• Shop locally for food and gifts, and use your own tote bag when shopping.

• Make your own gifts. Are you a talented baker, knitter or craftsman?

• Make your own wrapping paper. To recycle The Columbus Dispatch or journals. Or use a gift as part of the package: a garden pot for gardening supplies or a mixing bowl for kitchen utensils.

• Recycle your Christmas tree. Buy a live one and plant it in your garden. (Dig the hole soon, before the ground freezes, though.)

• Offer or exchange “white elephant” gifts to find a new home for that sweater Aunt Mabel made for you.

• Recycle your old cell phone or tablet. About 130 million phones are thrown away each year. Many “people” shelters would love to have an Apple X. You just need to clear your memory first.

• Do you have old holiday string lights that use little energy? Replace them with new energy efficient LEDs. But don’t throw away the old ones. The Hilliard Environmental Sustainability Commission collects fairy lights at the Tree Lighting Event at Old Hilliard from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on December 5. Bring them to us and we’ll recycle them for you.

• Do you have styrofoam in all those toys and gifts? Bring your expanded polystyrene to the Hilliard collection from 10 a.m. to noon on December 30 at Town Hall, 3800, municipal road. Hilliard now has the only EPS densifier in central Ohio, and it is operational. EPS, as is, has no buyer and is not easily recyclable. However, once densified into very dense bricks, it can be reused. However, we do not take packing peanuts. They are a slightly different type of foam and we do not have a buyer for them. However, many companies are now using peanuts made from corn or wheat. Throw a few pieces of your peanuts into the water. If they start to melt, they are made from corn or wheat and can be composted.

• Don’t forget your pumpkins. The Town of Hilliard collects them near the composting station just east of the Hilliard Municipal Building at 3800 Municipal Road until December 3. Pumpkins should not be thrown in your yard waste. They don’t make a good mulch. They are compostable and the city will take care of it for you.

And don’t forget the city’s new recycling collection station just inside the Hilliard Community Center at 3800 Veterans Memorial Drive. The current collections are fairy lights – in case you miss the December 5 deposit – and candy wrappers, personal hygiene wrappers (toothpaste containers, deodorant containers, etc.), household batteries and markers. .

Melissa Muth is a member of the Hilliard Environmental Sustainability Commission.

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