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In Lebanon, A Conversation About Trash And How To Reduce It

Daniela Allee

At an art gallery in Lebanon on Tuesday night, surrounded by photographs of compost, community members gathered to talk about trash.

Saran wrap, an empty box of broth and plastic firemen’s hats sat in neat display at the feet of Marc Morgan, Lebanon’s solid waste facility manager and Evelyn Swett, a photographer.

The two facilitated a conversation with a group of twelve people about waste, and finding ways to reduce it.

But people often feel overwhelmed. Morgan says. What can they recycle? What can’t they? Is this packaging better than that one?

“Make a decision somewhere, understand your decision and just move with it,” he said.

There are two questions that might help with that decision making.

“Do I need this? Is there an alternative?”

Asking these questions might help reduce waste even at the local landfill, which Morgan says, “is a hole that will eventually fill up.”

“To make that property last as long as possible as a disposal site, is to put as little as you can into it,” he said.

As a way to continue these community conversations, Morgan will also lead a discussion about limiting waste during holiday shopping.  That's at the Coop in Lebanon on Wednesday at 5:30.

Daniela is an editor in NHPR's newsroom. She leads NHPR's Spanish language news initiative, ¿Qué Hay de Nuevo, New Hampshire? and the station's climate change reporting project, By Degrees. You can email her at

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