How To Have A Green Christmas
How To Have A Green Christmas
Follow this advice from Waste Watch and the Environment Agency to make your Christmas a green one. Have a green Christmas this year!
Step 1: Decorations
Making your own decorations is not only eco-friendly, but also great fun - especially for over excited children. You can achieve effective results with a few simple items such as coloured paper, biscuits, oranges, old magazines and ribbons. Check out VideoJugs Christmas craft films for inspiration.
If you must buy decorations, get sturdy ones that can be used year after year, not the flimsy type which will need to be thrown out in the new year.
Step 2: Gifts
There are now a number of internet sites dedicated to selling eco-friendly products and gifts. These make great presents and also saves you a chaotic trip to the high street.
Try to select presents made from sustainable or recycled materials, avoid anything which is over packaged or liable to break easily.
Step 3: Cards
In the UK alone an estimated 1 billion cards end up in the bin, that's 17 cards per person. Try to cut down on this extortionate waste by buying cards made from sustainable or recycled paper. Alternatively send electronic cards over the internet.
Once the festive season is over don't bin your received cards, recycle them or keep them to make gift tags and decorations next year.
Step 4: Wrapping paper
Buy recycled wrapping paper and do away with sticky tape. Securing the parcels with ribbon or string looks great and can also be re-used.
Alternatively avoid the waste altogether by getting imaginative. Old magazines, newspapers or brown paper can make stylish wrapping.
Step 5: The tree
Buy a real, locally grown tree with roots. This can be planted in your garden and used year after year.
If you don't have a garden check with your local council to see if it have a scheme for chipping or composting trees.
Lights always bring a tree to life but remember to turn them off at night and when you are not in the room.
Step 6: Food and Drink
Christmas is the ideal time to buy locally, find out where your local farmers market is and pay it a visit. The food will be fresher and the shorter transportation distance from field to fork will significantly cut down on carbon emissions.
Avoid buying food which is overly packaged, loose bought items will taste just as good as their cellophane wrapped contemporaries.
Minimize your food waste by not buying excessive amounts. Simply confirming how many people are eating will prevent you from preparing too much. Avoid throwing out any leftovers, the majority of foods can be kept for several days if refrigerated.
If you are throwing a party don't use disposable plates and cups. Instead borrow the real thing from a good friend or relative.
Step 7: After Christmas
The main source of extra rubbish post Christmas are all things that can be recycled. Create a recycling point in your house for collecting bottles, cans, paper, packaging and cards. Check with your council to find your nearest recycling centre, or to see which days they collect - don't forget this may differ from usual over the festive period.
If you have any unwanted presents, don't bin them, donate them to your local charity shop instead.
Have a Merry Christmas and an even greener New Year.