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Choose the right route for tree recycling

It’s not time to pack away the festive decorations just yet, but when you finally take down the Christmas tree, please remember to recycle the real ones rather than throwing them in the rubbish bin.

Staffordshire County Council’s 14 Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs) are accepting real fir trees once the baubles have been taken down and put away.

In previous years some trees have been chopped up and put in the black bin for collection, but that causes problems further down the line, so the authority is repeating its successful TreeCycle campaign.

Last Christmas 325 tonnes of trees were recycled, compared to 220 tonnes the year before.

Simon Tagg, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member for Environment, Infrastructure and Climate Change, said: “Last year’s TreeCycle campaign was a great success, increasing the number of real trees recycled by almost 50 per cent.

“The trees are either turned into wood chips and spread on footpaths on our country parks or to be used at county farms.”

Staffordshire only puts around one per cent of its waste in landfill and channels most of the county’s black bin domestic waste through the heat generating energy recovery facility at Four Ashes near Coven.

However, the machinery at Four Ashes isn’t designed to cope with chopped up trees, which can clog the system.

Apart from closure on New Year’s Day, Staffordshire’s HWRCs will be open as usual.

As well as trees, they will be accepting the usual range of household waste, including cardboard packaging, as part of the county’s commitment to reduce waste.

With almost 1.6 million visits each year, Staffordshire’s HWRCs accept 42 different types of material with an average recycling rate of 71 per cent over five years.


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