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2003 News from Mecklenburg County

December 8, 2003


Charlotte, NC - How much ribbon would it take to tie a bow around the world?  The answer is nearly 40,000 miles - or the amount of ribbon thrown away in the U.S. each year during the holiday season.  The holidays are prime season for generating trash.  But the City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County is encouraging citizens to take steps to reduce the amount of trash placed out by the curb this season.

You can start by purchasing and wrapping gifts in a way that reduces the amount of trash generated. Here are some ideas:

· "No packaging" presents, like gift certificates or tickets for movies, theaters or restaurants.· Environmentally friendly gifts such as a battery charger, a perpetual calendar or an erasable message board. · Buy durable toys made from wood or metal so they can be passed down to others. · Create a photo album of times shared together.· Purchase larger rolls of film. They are cheaper and reduce waste. · Wrap gifts in bags, scarves or Christmas stockings. They can be reused year after year.· Use the Sunday comics or have children create their own wrapping paper by designing and coloring on a grocery bag.· Save gift boxes, bows and gift wrap to use next year. · Recycle holiday cards by keeping the fronts or sending them to St. Jude's Ranch for Children.· Decorate your home with holly, cedar, berries, fruits and nuts, all of which can be composted after use. Use popcorn and cranberries to decorate the tree.

For more information about waste reduction and recycling in Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, check the Web site

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