Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Recycling Holiday Lights

Do you remember when one burned-out light bulb rendered an entire string of lights virtually useless? Thankfully, that frustration has been remedied by light manufacturers, and burned-out bulbs are now easily identified and replaced.  Yet Americans still waste several million pounds of lights each year.

The value of worn-out strings of lights and extension cords is gaining recognition. There is growing interest in the possibility of recycling them, rather than throwing them in the landfill.  In a landfill, lights can pose a threat to wildlife and can take 100 to 1,000 years to decompose. More and more people want to know where they can donate or recycle their lights and cords.

If you would like to donate your lights, the Green Bay Habitat for Humanity ReStore collects old lights. Call them at (920) 338-1650 or visit www.restoregb.org.

Many local scrap metal businesses collect strings of lights and cords year-round.  Some hardware stores and local home improvement stores also offer recycling drop-off or trade in programs over the holidays. Check with your local store for details.