Four years ago, Craig Jung of St. Louis Green and Laurna Godwin of Vector Communications joined forces and asked Wal-Mart to participate in a Holiday Light Recycling Drive. To date the program has collected 86,000 pounds of unwanted holiday lights, which were then recycled and sent back to manufacturers to be used in new products. With over 500 collection sites, the partnership hopes to double last year's success. According to St. Louis Green founder, Craig Jung, "Our goal this year is 128,000 pounds, that's four tractor trailer loads diverted from landfills." In addition to diverting thousands of pounds of waste from our landfills, the program also helps feed the hungry. A portion of proceeds from the drive is donated to Operation Food Search, helping those less fortunate to have a happier holiday season.
This year, the drive has expanded to include Kansas City, Springfield, Columbia, Cape Girardeau, and the Metro East area of Illinois. The collection sites, including the 98 participating Wal-Mart locations, can be found at http://stlouisgreen.com. Lights can be dropped off at the Wal-Mart locations through December 30th, and all other locations through January 13th.
Earlier this year, the drive received two statewide awards. The Missouri Recycling Association honored both St. Louis Green and Wal-Mart with its Outstanding Collection Program award. In addition, the Missouri Waste Control Coalition gave the retailer and non-profit organization its Outstanding Achievement award for Environmental Stewardship.
How the Program Works
It’s easy to participate. Companies, schools, churches and other organizations can complement their sustainability programs by simply requesting a bin to be delivered to their location and then letting people know that they can bring in their old lights to be recycled. Then St. Louis Green will pick-up the lights and recycle them. It’s that simple!
Join the Drive! If you would like to collect lights at your place of business, school, or other type of location please email your contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about the program or to request a bin, email Erin at email@example.com
Together we can make this the greenest holiday season yet!