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Councils gear up for Christmas tree recycling push

by Steve Beasant on 4 January, 2014

As people prepare to take down their Christmas trees, local authorities across the land have sprung into action to offer collection or drop-off services so trees can be recycled.

Recycling Christmas trees ultimately saves taxpayers money by reducing the amount of waste sent to landfill. The Local Government Association (LGA) estimates it costs the taxpayer nearly £100 for every 40 trees sent to landfill. But by recycling Christmas trees instead of landfilling or incinerating them, councils are cutting these costs in half.

Trees which are recycled are either made into woodchips or turned into soil conditioner, which has a variety of uses including for agriculture and compost. Councils offer Christmas tree recycling in a variety of ways: some will collect Christmas trees with normal garden waste, some will have designated collections and others will have special drop-off points.

Cllr Mike Jones, Chair of the LGA’s Environment and Housing Board, said:

“Whether you take down the tree on the Twelfth Night or straight after the New Year, councils up and down the land will be geared up to take your Christmas tree.

“Christmas can be an expensive time, but councils are helping to keep costs down through increasing the range of things which can be recycled to save money and minimising expensive landfill.

“We hope that 2014 will bring positive news from the Treasury that the ever-increasing landfill tax which cost taxpayers nearly £600 million in 2013 will be frozen and made available for reinvestment in innovative recycling technologies which can help us meet recycling targets and save taxpayers money.”

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