Recycling Christmas lights - WPSD Local 6: Your news, weather, and sports authority

Recycling Christmas lights

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JACKSON CO, IL -

Christmas lights help make the season bright, but the bulbs contain toxins, sometimes even lead.

That means when they burn out, you should not toss them with the rest of your trash.

This Christmas, think about recycling more than just your grocery bags.

Tasis Karayiannis says throwing your burnt out Christmas lights in the trash could have environmental consequences.

"It will take thousand of years to fall apart and disintegrate," said Karayiannis.

If they break in a landfill, they could even make us sick.

"They leak and they might come into our water," said Karayiannis.

You can bring your burnt out lights to Carri Gale at the Jackson County Health Department.

"Any type of holiday string lights. Any size of bulb," said Gale.

Make sure you have them recycle ready by removing any tinsel or holly.

The plastic in these lights can make anything from a bucket to a storage pallet; Even the tiny metal wire inside the plastic can be turned into something new.

Karayiannis says he will ship all the lights up to a sorting center in Chicago where they will be given new life.

The Paducah Health Department says they are not taking Christmas lights, but any recycling center will know how to sort them so they can be used again.

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