Somerset is being urged to put its heart into avoiding waste and boosting recycling this Valentine’s Day.
Like many key dates in the calendar, February 14 can generate more waste than usual as people hit the shops for gifts and treats for loved ones.
But there are lots of ways to celebrate and show your Valentine you care while loving the planet too.
If you are looking for gift, think about things that do not come in big boxes – or any boxes at all.
Vouchers for experiences, local attractions, meals out, the theatre or cinema make great presents to be shared together without contributing to Somerset’s cardboard mountain.
Buying local is usually a good move environmentally, as well as supporting the local economy. For ideas, visit www.shopsomerset.co.uk
If you want something delivered, small independents tend to avoid the excess packaging you see with some of the bigger online retailers. Or, hit the shops in person and avoid unnecessary packaging completely.
After the Valentine’s Day has been and gone, recycle wherever possible.
The cardboard boxes from chocolates can go in your recycling box and the plastic trays in your Bright Blue Bag.
Unless you are keeping them forever, make sure you put Valentine cards out for recycling with all your other cardboard.
And, once they have started to wilt, compost flowers if you can or put them in your refuse bin – they should not go into food waste.
Councillor Sarah Dyke, Chair of the Somerset Waste Board, said: “Recycling is at its highest ever rate in Somerset and with a bit of planning it’s easy to extend this to your Valentine shopping.
“Better still, think about ways to avoid waste in the first place – recycling is great but reducing is even better if you want to show your love for the environment.”
For information about all the recycling we collect from your kerbside every week, visit www.somersetwaste.gov.uk/recycling-collections
To keep up to date with waste services, visit the website or follow @somersetwaste on Facebook or Twitter.