SPARTANBURG CO., (WSPA) – This week is filled with sweet treats and gifts under the tree, which means more trash. Officials with Spartanburg County say they see a 25% increase in waste and recycling during this time of the year. But, they do say there are ways you can help condense the amount of waste you’re bringing to dump.

During the holiday season, a lot of gifts are exchanged, but the wrapping paper and ribbons have to go somewhere. Jes Sdao, Recycling Coordinator for Spartanburg County, says everyone’s waste in the county comes to them.

“All of those people wind up bringing that material here, whether it’s the city of Spartanburg or a private holler. Everything comes to the landfill when it comes to waste,” said Sdao.

She says during this time of year, their employees are working more.

“It does make a significant impact as far as our staffing levels, as far as how much work we have to put in. We are getting more waste, which means that we’ve got more trucks on site, we have staff that are working significantly harder to manage the waste,” she said.

Sdao says even with the increase, it’s nothing the landfill can’t handle.

“It does account for the peak periods, as well as the lower periods where we see a little less waste,” said Sdao.

She says there are things people can do to help cut back. She says the number one thing is to recycle.

“Wrapping paper, boxes, carboard boxes, your giftbags a lot of time can be recycled, tissue paper,” said Sdao.

Another thing she says to do is to sort through your trash and put them in different bags.

“Sorting and separating your waste before you get here means that when you get here, you’ll be directed exactly where you need to go. And you’ll be able to offload your materials quickly and conveniently,” she said.

She says to make sure you flatten any cardboard boxes and put them in the cardboard compactors. She also asks that people be patient when bringing their waste due to the increase of people.

“Because there is a lot more trash and our staffing levels certainly don’t reflect that there’s more trash,” said Sdao.

As for your Christmas trees, the county says bring them to the landfill. If they’re real, they can be turned into mulch. Artificial ones that have a base or a pole can be used for their scrap metal. Sdao says the county has 17 recycling centers where you can bring items that are recyclable. She says recycling is better for both the environment and economy.

For a list of items, click here.

The recycling center is closed on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Sdao says it will reopen with normal hours on Monday. She says the recycling centers will also be closed on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.