Christmas is a time of joy, laughter and happiness with family and friends coming together to celebrate together. Now and again some of our Christmas habits can inflict mayhem on the environment with tons of extra rubbish, increased energy usage from lights and the millions of un-recycled trees. Let’s look to go green this Christmas!
Buy an organic turkey – 10 million turkeys are eaten every year! Wouldn’t it be nicer if yours didn’t taste mass produced? If you buy a free range organic turkey, not only will it taste better but you are supporting local farmers too. If you buy all your Christmas food locally it will be chemical free, there will be a reduction in food miles and CO2 emissions and a reduced dependence on oil. Buying locally also boosts rural jobs!
Christmas trees – surprisingly there is a big debate surrounding Christmas trees after Christmas. Research shows that real trees are in fact the better option. Real trees biodegrade and grow every year using natural resources whereas artificial ones use toxic materials and petrochemicals in its plastics. They also take a lot of energy to produce and travel from the Far East – perhaps the artificial trees aren’t so green after all!
Decorate your home with natural and recyclable materials;
*Use sprigs and branches with berries such as Holly, fir tree and pinecones to create a wreath
*Use old jars to create lanterns
*Use low energy LED fairy lights as they use a fraction of energy compared to the standard lights
*Use old decorations – don’t re-buy every year. You can also make your own decorations!
*Use hand cut wooden letters to spell out ‘love,’ ‘joy,’ and ‘peace’
Dispose of your Christmas tree properly – 6 million trees were brought last year creating 9000 tonnes of rubbish. Garden centres amongst other green places have disposal systems in place.
Recycle – Over the Christmas period we all use an extra 750 million bottles and over 500 million drinks cans. To reduce this high volume, buy larger bottles to save on packaging, but either way, make sure it all makes its way to the recycling bins!
FACT: We will create 3 million tonnes of rubbish the Christmas in Britain – that’s equivalent to 400,000 double decker buses. Over half of this can be recycled.
Here are a few other ideas to help you on your way to eco-friendly Christmas…
*Set yourself a challenge – how empty can you keep your bin? Buy long lasting items instead of disposable ones
*Pass unwanted presents onto charity shops – someone will want them
*Buy recycled wrapping paper and use string or ribbon or wool for wrapping gifts. Use shoe boxes to give larger presents
Have an eco-friendly Christmas and go green!