We have detected that you are running an unsupported version of Microsoft Internet Explorer. Please upgrade to version 9 or above for the best experience of this website

12 days of sustainable Christmas

Publish Date 01/12/2018

As the holiday season gets into full swing, we have put together these tips on recycling your Christmas waste.

1. Decorations

Buy good quality decorations and ornaments that can be reused for years to come, or get creative and make your own!

2. Wrapping

Most wrapping paper can be recycled (except the foil lined kind) but its always a great idea to try and buy recycled paper or some other options are;

  • Use kid's artwork to wrap presents for proud family members
  • Use a santa sack or stocking for your gifts – no need to wrap and can be reused every year!
  • Wrap presents in a tea towel or sarong that can form part of the gift
  • Wrap gifts in newspaper and add a personal touch with something from your garden
    - If you receive a wrapped gift, use the paper to line drawers or shred it for new year's eve confetti

3. Gifts

When buying presents for your loved ones, think of the environment. Research what your recipients really want instead of buying token gifts, or instead of buying a physical gift, treat them to an experience like a massage, cooking class or restaurant voucher. For the right person charity donations can make a great present, or for a gift that grows, give a native tree or a herb garden.

4. Food

For Christmas lunch and dinner this year, reduce waste by making a list and checking it twice before you go food shopping! Are you really sure you will use the extra box of mince pies? Financially and environmentally, it's better to buy more later if you need it rather than wasting what you have too much of. Write a shopping list to avoid impulse buying and take into account things you already have in your pantry. It's also important to store your food carefully so that it doesn’t spoil too quickly.

5. Leftovers

If you prepared too much Christmas food, instead of throwing it away you could freeze the leftovers for another meal during the week. Or search for websites with recipe ideas for turning your leftovers into a delicious new meal.

6. Batteries not included

If you're giving a battery powered gift, remember to include rechargeable batteries and a recharger too! But most importantly don't throw your batteries in your red bin, they're hazardous. Drop of batteries at local libraries, the Council admin building or Salamander Bay Waste Transfer Station Community Recycling Centre.

7. Recycling

One of the simplest things that you can do to reduce your environmental impact at this time of year is to ensure that you put the right things into your recycling bin. Remember to place all your Christmas wrapping paper, envelopes, cards, party hats, bon bons, biscuit tins, fruit mince pie trays and cardboard packaging inside your Yellow Lid Recycling Bin. Cellophane and foil wraps CAN’T be recycled, they belong in your Red Lid bin, as do ribbons, bows and twist ties. If you’re engaging in a little festive cheer - make sure those bottles and cans find a home inside your recycling bin too! Happy Recycling.

8. Electronics recycling

Recycle old mobile phones, chargers, tablets, computers, printers and cartridges that are replaced with shiny new ones at Christmas time. Did you know that you can do this at Salamander Bay Waste Transfer Station during opening hours.

9. De-clutter

Use that well-earned time off work to get rid of some of that clutter that's been building up all year. You can dispose of metals, paints, oils, batteries, electronic waste, and green waste for FREE at the Salamander Bay Waste Transfer Station during opening hours.

10. Leave it how you found it – take your rubbish with you

Many people spend time over the Christmas holidays picnicking, camping, and partaking in lots of outdoor activities. Help keep our environment beautiful by ensuring you place your rubbish in bins if they are provided and if not – take it home with you!

11. Download the app!

If you're unsure about what can and can't be recycled, download the RecycleSmart App – information at your fingertips!!

12. Return and Earn Container deposit scheme

Did you know that the NSW Government has rolled out the Return and Earn scheme state-wide from 1st December? Now you can do your bit for the environment by returning eligible containers for a 10c refund at your nearest collection point. Think of it like a reverse vending machine where you put the container in, and receive a voucher in return. The voucher can be exchanged for cash, shopping credits or donated to charity. So start collecting those bottles and seeing real rewards! For more information visit the Return and Earn website.

Find out more about Council waste services over the holiday period or recycling in Port Stephens.

Wishing you and your loved ones a very Merry Christmas, from Port Stephens Council.