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Posts tagged ‘Sustainable Halloween’

November’s Ghoulish Garbage: A Curbside Guide

As we know, there can be some scary finds in the Salt Lake City curbside recycling bins! There are also many tricks! (Both of these links are to recent Instagram stories done by our Recycling Education team. Pretty interesting, right?)

So now that Halloween is over, don’t give our waste management teams a fright! Here’s a quick guide to where your Halloween waste should go.

Help stop monstrous non-recyclable things from ending up in your recycling bin!

Compost: Your Jack-O’-Lantern’s Final Resting Place

If you’re an extra resourceful pumpkin carver, you may have decided to roast up your pumpkin seeds for a delicious Halloween snack! In fact, there are many fun ways to put your pumpkin’s guts to use.

But once you’ve used up your pumpkin and the jack-o’-lantern’s smile is fading, you have an important choice to make: where does the pumpkin go?

The combination of yard waste like leaves and sticks and kitchen scraps including eggshells and coffee grounds makes nutrient-rich dirt that promotes plant and soil health. Indeed, about 30% of what’s thrown away as garbage in the United States — including your perfect pumpkin — could be composted.

So instead of letting the great pumpkin take up space in the landfill (where it releases methane, a potent greenhouse gas), put your pumpkin into the compost bin!

(Remember to only put pumpkins without paint, wax, glitter or other non-organic decorations in the brown bin).

Image of a cute wrinkly pumpkin ready to compost!

Garbage vs. Recycling?

Unless a helpful witch or wizard was able to transform all those candy wrappers into clean cardboard or aluminum, or if you send materials to a recycling program like TerraCycle, candy wrappers should always be put into the garbage can.

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Green Your Halloween (Part 2)

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Here are some of our favorite tips to green your Halloween!

Costumes

Do you generally buy a brand new costume, wear it once, and stash it away in the closet for years? Do you buy seasonal costumes that are full of toxins? It’s time to save some money, revere your health, and green your Halloween experience. Instead of buying a costume, rent one. Salt Lake City has a variety of places where you can rent a costume.

For adults and kids alike, be creative and make one from finds at a second hand store! Salt Lake City has several types of stores to choose from: Savers, Uptown Cheapskate and Deseret Industries all sell gently-used clothing.

Looking for last minute inspiration? There are about a million ideas on Pinterest.

Trick-or-Treating

For those going out:

  • Remember to bring something reusable to carry the candy in. A cloth grocery bag works well and is easy to carry. Pillowcases or a small bucket work well too!

For those staying in:

  • Hand out something tasty and healthy! Fruits and veggies (e.g. apples, baby carrots, grapes) are always a good choice and require minimal (if any) packaging. Organic fruit snacks are easier on the teeth than candy and are still delicious. Have you considered packets of granola, organic juice boxes or dried fruits?
  • There are plenty of non-food items that can be handed out too! Stickers, crayons, toothpastes and toothbrushes, beads and bean bags are all treats. Don’t forget pencils!

Things to Avoid

  • Most children’s face paints are full of toxic heavy metals (e.g. lead, nickel, and chromium). Manufacturers don’t include these on the package label. Make your own food-based make-up with these DIY Recipes.
  • Foods that contain high amounts of corn syrup/sugar, hydrogenated oils, or artificial colors and flavors.
  • Purchasing new costumes.
  • Purchasing a container to hold Halloween treats.
  • Handing out cheap petroleum-based, plastic toys.

For More Information On Greening Your Halloween

Above all, have a safe, happy and green Halloween!