Friday, December 24, 2010

Recycling Christmas Lights

Whether clear or colored holiday lights brighten the season...if you can get them working.

"After Thanksgiving we get the lights out an inevitably they don't work," says's Craig Jung. Despite the fuse changes and checking every bulb instead of going up some strands...go out.

The push is on to recycle them instead of sending them to the landfill.

"What people need to understand is a lot of what they are throwing out in landfills actually has a value," says QRS Recycling CEO Greg Janson who says even the worthless wads of holiday lights.

"There is so much copper in these," says Jung holding a strand of lights, "the plastic and the glass all gets recycled it just gets shredded and they can use the whole thing its 100 percent so it just doesn't make sense to throw them in the trash."

At most area Walmart stores big boxes sit in the garden center begging for bundles of burned out or broken lights.

"You can bring in your lights as well as your electrical cords," tells Walmart regional manager Glenda Fleming-Willis, "we are really excited to see how much more we can generate from a recycling standpoint."

From the boxes at 18 area Walmart stores, volunteers will get them to Q-R-S Recycling.

"This plant does anywhere from 7-8000 tons a month," says Janson of the amounts recycled at the Hazelwood plant but thats in cardboard, paper and plastics. For this campaign Q-R-S will make the effort and process the lights with proceeds going back to and it's environmental education programs. Last year the effort collected 3 tons of lights.

"If you think of 3 tons," asks Jung, "that is more than an automobile."

This year the goal is to keep three times that amount out of the landfill. Check out the video at:,0,1728328.story

No comments:

Post a Comment