Recycle Non-Working Holiday Lights

It happens to all of us — you get out your holiday decorations, are all stoked to trim the tree and create a celebratory light show to be seen from space when lo and behold, one (or many) strings of lights doesn’t work. You check all the bulbs, plug it in to different outlets and power bars, attempt to change the fuses, and nothing works.
So you begrudgingly toss the light strand, muttering how it worked perfectly fine last year, and go and purchase a new one.
However, the Recycling Association of Minnesota has set up Recycle Your Holidays, a system to collect non-functioning holiday lights for a second year.

According to their website, an average string of lights weighs about a pound. Last year, the program’s goal was to recycle 5000 lbs, but they manages to collect over 100,000 pounds of holiday light strings and put 200 people to work disassembling the strands. This year, their goal is 200,000 pounds!
The program has several drop-off points in Minnesota, and once collected, they are disassembled in employment training centers by people who otherwise would be unemployed. The site claims that every single part of the lights are recyclable, and an informational news report video details how the pieces are transformed into new products.
However, if you don’t live in Minnesota, the site also offers a mailing address to send not only light strands, but electrical, appliance, and telephone wires as well to their program.
Do you know of any other holiday decoration recycling programs in your area? Link to them in the comments below, and let us know how you’re making your holidays greener this year.
Source: Recycling Association of Minnesota
Photo: trekkyandy

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