Dos and don'ts for holiday waste

·3 min read

The gifts have been unwrapped, turkeys have been carved and Christmas trees are starting to shed their needles — here are some tips on how to get rid of all the holiday waste.

Jason London, who is with the city's waste and recycling services, talked to the Calgary Eyeopener's Paul Karchut about the dos and don't's for recycling and composting holiday waste.

Wrapping paper, boxes and bubble wrap

Common seasonal garbage like wrapping and tissue paper can all be put in the blue cart.

Cardboard boxes, shoe boxes and anything else you might have used to wrap a gift can also be crushed and included.

As well, London says bubble wrap can be recycled, which he says many people don't realize.

"As long as you're recycling stretchy plastics, you can put things like bubble wrap in one single plastic bag and tie the handles shut and put those all in your blue cart," he said.

Leftover food

If those extra salads you bought have since gone bad, make sure you remove it from the plastic bag or container before tossing in your green cart, says London.

"One of the things we'd like to change is to make sure that we don't get any plastics going into the green cart."

Online shopping

Has the packaging from your online orders taken over a part of your house? Well, London says most of that can be put in the blue cart.

Fold up all of the cardboard boxes and put the plastic packaging in with your grocery bags.

However, London says to make sure that Styrofoam is not included as it contaminates other recyclable materials.

Christmas trees

There are a couple of different ways to take care of your Christmas tree after the holidays are over.

London says one popular way is to cut it into pieces and put it in the green cart with the rest of your food and kitchen waste.

However, he says he wants to remind people that it needs to be chopped up quite a bit before it's tossed in the cart. All of the branches need to come off and the trunk needs to be cut into several pieces.

And if you don't want to take the saw to your tree, you can use one of the city's Christmas tree drop-off locations and haul the whole tree free of charge.

Here are the Christmas tree drop-off locations:

  • Auburn Bay Off-Leash Area — 52nd Street and Auburn Bay Drive S.E.

  • Bottomlands Park — St. George's Drive N.E. (soccer field parking lot).

  • Bowness — 7937 43rd Ave. N.W. (in lot behind building).

  • Braeside Park — 256 Brookpark Dr. S.W.

  • Confederation Park — 905 30th Ave. N.W. (east parking lot).

  • Huntington Hills Athletic Park — 7920 4th St. at Huntstrom Drive N.E.

  • IKEA 8000 11th St. S.E. (northwest corner of parking lot behind store).

  • Marda Loop Communities Association — 3130 16th St. S.W.

  • North Glenmore Park — 6615 37th St. S.W. (Weaselhead parking lot).

  • Park 96 — 14660 Parkland Blvd. S.E.

  • Pop Davies/ Ogden Athletic Park — Ogden Road & Millican Road S.E.

  • Prairie Winds Park — 44th Street and 54th Avenue N.E. (south parking lot).

  • Sacramento Parks Depot — 10400 Sacramento Dr. S.W.

If you have any other specific questions about which bin to use, head to the city's website or call 311.

With files from the Calgary Eyeopener.