Be ever green and recycle this Christmas

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Derry City and Strabane District Council is reminding the public to put recycling at the top of their Christmas list and to take the green option when taking down their Christmas decorations this year,

The Chairman of the Health and Regeneration Committee, Cllr Brian Tierney, is encouraging the public to think positively about recycling and to use the public services that are provided to dispose of the additional rubbish that accumulates over the festive period.

“At this time of the year many households find they have more rubbish than usual with packaging from gifts, decorations and more food waste than normal.

“The Council is encouraging the public to make full use of the recycling facilities available by recycling Christmas cards, paper, cardboard, plastic bottles, tins and cans. You can even recycle your Christmas tree at the Recycling and Amenity sites across the Council area.

He commented: “We all have a responsibility to protect and conserve the environment and everyone can do their bit by recycling rubbish rather than throwing everything in their black bin. It takes just a few minutes to separate things like Christmas cards, used wrapping paper, boxes, plastic, alluminium cans and tins from things that can’t be recycled.

“I would also encourage you all to take advantage of the Council’s Christmas Tree disposal service. Christmas Trees can be left at any of the city’s Household Recycling Centres where they are shredded and used as compost. The main message is to reduce the amount of waste you produce, reuse things like plastic bags, plastic containers and glass jars and recycle the waste you produce.”

He added that the Council’s tree recycling services goes a long way towards making recycling easier than ever and helps householders put their good intentions into practice.

“We can all do our bit this Christmas to help our local environment by putting recycling top of our Christmas list.”

Julie Hannaway, Recycling and Waste Minimisation Officer with Derry City and Strabane District Council said there are lots of ways people can contribute to the environment over Christmas.

“You can be a smart shopper by using a reusable bag or a bag for life instead of plastic carrier bags, buy reusable Gift bags instead of wrapping paper and choose gift vouchers for goods or experiences, or better still buy a “Gift for Life” from the charity of your choice.Try reusable alternatives to throwaway items such as razors and remember to take old clothes and toys to a charity shop. In an effort to reduce packaging and save money you should buy refills and turn old Christmas cards into new things such as bookmarks or gift tags.

“When buying food items, buy loose fruit and vegetables rather than pre-packed, buy rechargeable batteries and avoid convenience foods with layers of packaging. Christmas Cards can be recycled at the local Marks and Spencer stores between 02 and 31 January. For every 1000 cards recycled, Marks & Spencer will plant a tree in the UK,” she added.

Details of Christmas opening hours at amenity sites and recycling centres are available online at www.derrystrabane.com/openinghours