Have you ever thought about the environmental impact of the festive season?
In the UK alone, 114,000 tonnes of plastic packaging won’t be recycled this Christmas. And in the USA, 25% more rubbish is thrown away in the period from Thanksgiving to the New Year. That amounts to about 25 million tonnes of extra rubbish!
If every American family used reused materials to wrap just 3 presents, enough paper would be saved to cover 45,000 (American) football fields!
Give nature a break with these sustainable tips:
- 🎁 Give a homemade gift! There are tonnes of ideas and tutorials online. How about baking some delicious cookies or making a personalised snow globe? Or try your hand at making a beautiful terrarium or putting together a ‘home-spa’ box for the person in your life who needs some rest and relaxation. We love this tutorial for homemade ‘agate’ coasters!
- ♻️ Not the crafty type? Try to shop local or buy gifts made from recycled materials.
- 🌄Give experiences like days out, adventures or educational sessions on a topic like stargazing or even a language course! If you live somewhere where COVID restrictions are still limiting the activities you can do, why not create an IOU voucher booklet for a friend!
- 📦 Save your deliveries! Upcycle cardboard and brown paper to use in replacement of wrapping paper. There are lots of gorgeous ideas for how to transform your brown paper into a stunning - and unique - gift-wrap here.
5. 😋Try a planet-based dinner! Eat organic and local meat or even go meat-free! Discover what a planet-based diet could look like for you in this guide we published earlier this year.
6. 🗑️Limit food waste! If you’re having a traditional turkey and all the trimmings dinner on Christmas day, then check out this set of recipes for your leftovers! Brussel sprout sauerkraut anyone?!
7. 🐦Don’t forget about the birds - especially if you live somewhere cold! Our bird friends need a helping hand finding food at this time of year, so why not make your own recycled bird feeder? Instructions here.
8. ❄️If you’re decorating this year, have a go at making your own decorations! This wreath will look beautiful on your front door, and there are 78 more ideas for you in this epic guide!
9. 💡 Use LED lights - according to the Solar Electric Power Company, LED lights are up to 80% more efficient than traditional lighting. 95% of the energy in LEDs is converted into light and only 5% is wasted as heat. This is compared to fluorescent lights which convert 95% of energy to heat and only 5% into light. They also last a lot longer than other types of bulb!
10. 🎄Be conscious of the footprint of your Christmas tree - why not rent a real one that’s been used before this year? Or even decorate one of your existing houseplants!
We hope you found these tips useful and wish you a very happy festive season!