Holiday Recycling

Holiday Lights

Recycle Holiday Lights! Drop off unwanted light strings at Andover City Hall Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. from December through January 31st.  There are designated containers in the lobby. Every part of the strand is dismantled by vocational center clients and properly recycled locally.

Powered up for the Holidays
A bit about batteries.


With the Holidays, comes increased use of batteries of all types and sizes, and according to the EPA about 40 percent of all battery sales occur during the holiday season from Thanksgiving to Christmas. With this in mind, we have collected some guidelines and interesting tips/ facts about battery usage and recycling.

We know that many of our readers may already know much of this information, so we have collected some here in a form that can be quickly dropped in to your newsletters and other public information pieces.  


While many people do know about battery use and disposal, we are constantly surprised to hear stories such as that of the dental office clerk who did not know that the cordless toothbrushes they offered for sale, contained batteries, or the  number of people who have not considered how that birthday card "sings" to them. The intent here is not to belittle, rather to point out that recycling professionals and educators might miss those opportunities for education.

Batteries play such an integral part in our daily lives that we often do not give them a second thought. We hope this article will be of use.



According to the Chicago CBS story found in RAM's "It's In the News "section below, The Illinois Institute of Technology reports that the value of paying more for a high end battery such as an AA lithium, depends upon how you plan to use it. For a child's toy which may be left on for hours after they finish playing with it, an inexpensive battery may be the best choice. They also recommend storing your batteries in the freezer to preserve battery life.



Many Minnesota residents are justifiably confused about whether they can recycle their spent single use batteries including alkalines. The answer to that question depends upon where they live. While Minnesota state law does not currently require the recycling of these batteries, there are a number of places which will accept them for recycling, and may charge a fee to recycle them. Many county or city Household Hazardous Waste and Recycling programs and some retail stores will accept these batteries as well as those which must be recycled. Due to the wide variance of sites accepting batteries, we recommend that you check with your local store or county/city program.


When possible, buy rechargeable batteries to accompany your electronic gifts, and consider giving a battery charger as well. Rechargeable batteries reduce the amount of potentially harmful materials thrown away, and can save money in the long run.



Did you know that the U.S. Department of Transportation has safety regulations that apply to lithium batteries and battery-powered consumer electronic products in checked baggage or carry-on luggage? If you are traveling and perhaps carrying on or shipping gifts with batteries, you may want to check out this link.


Call2Recycle® is a product stewardship program providing no-cost rechargeable battery and cellphone recycling solutions across the U.S. and Canada. They have a program to recycle the following commonly used rechargeable batteries: To learn where you can recycle rechargeable batteries click here. 

Photo courtesy Call2Recycle


Nickle- Metal Hydride (Ni-MH) found in cell phones, cordless power tools digital camera and two-way  

            radios and more

Nickle -Cadmium (Ni-Cd) found in cordless power tools digital cameras and other equipment;


Lithium Ion (Li-Ion) found in Laptop computers, e-readers digital cameras and other cordless


Nickle- Zinc ( Ni-Zn) in wireless keyboards, digital cameras and small electronics.


Small Sealed Lead Acid (SSLA/Pb) found in mobility scooters, fire emergency devices, emergency  

         lighting and hospital equipment


To see further information on this click here.


Or on the MPCA website


And about that wonderful rendition of " Deck the Halls" that chimes out at you from certain Christmas cards... yes, indeed, there is a "button" battery inside that card, so please do not recycle or dispose of that card without removing the battery first. 

Furthermore, those tiny 3 volt batteries, often the size of an aspirin, can be easily ingested by small children.

Button or coin batteries, can cause serious injury or death if they are swallowed since they do not reliably pass through the body, but often lodge in the throat or intestine, where they begin to release hydroxide and cause serious chemical burns.