Recycling Christmas trees and lights

News Article



December 21, 2020 

Give your Christmas tree a second life this holiday season by recycling it at one of several locations throughout the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS). Before recycling, please ensure all ornaments, tinsel, fake snow and other decorations are removed.

Several communities offer Christmas tree collection or drop off programs for clean, natural trees:

  • Penticton Fire Fighters Local 1399 will pick up Christmas trees by donation from December 27 to January 18. All donations received will go to the B.C. Professional Fire Fighters Burn Fund and Muscular Dystrophy charities. Penticton and West Bench residents can call 250-490-2315 to register for collection. You can also drop off clean, natural Christmas trees at Fire Hall #2 at 285 Dawson Ave from December 26 to January 31.
  • District of Summerland residents can call the Fire Hall at 250-404-4087 or e-mail to request collection of Christmas trees. Summerland Secondary students will collect trees by donation Sunday, January 3 and January 10th from 9:00 am to 10:00 am. Donations go to Summerland Secondary Dry Grad.
  • Town of Oliver will have a bin for Christmas tree drop-off on Station Street just north of Bank Avenue until January 8. This tree drop-off is sponsored by EZ Bins.
  • Town of Osoyoos residents can drop off Christmas trees adjacent to the washroom at Kinsmen Park (on boulevard) or at the northwest corner of the parking lot below the Sun Bowl Arena sign until Monday, January 11. For information, please call 250-495-6213 or email

When open, all landfills in the Regional District will accept up to 500 kg (1,100 lbs) of yard waste free of charge including clean natural Christmas trees. Trees must be free of ornaments, tinsel, fake snow and lights. The trees will be chipped and given new life as animal bedding or compost. Burning Christmas trees creates strong smoke due to moisture in the wood and needles. Fine particulates from smoke have been linked to respiratory and heart disease. Any decorations left on the tree will create added pollution.

Christmas lights are fully recyclable in BC. Light strings, light bulbs and light fixtures can be dropped off at participating depots across the RDOS. To learn more, visit

For further information, please contact the RDOS Solid Waste Department at 250-490-4129 or toll free

1-877-610-3737 ext. 4129, e-mail or visit


Karla Kozakevich, Chair
Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen


Cam Baughen
RDOS Solid Waste Management Coordinator

Erick Thompson

Andrea Rendall

RDOS Communications                         

RDOS Communications