The Christmas season is already well under way and I’m sure you’re busy wrapping presents, decorating the tree and planning what exactly you are going to have for Christmas lunch! It is a fantastic time of year, but it is also a time of needless waste and excess. Without being a humbug, we want to give you a few tips on how to make the Christmas holidays that little bit easier on the wallet and help the environment at the same time.
So Much Waste!
Christmas would not be the same without stacks of presents under the tree, but have you ever thought about the amount of wrapping paper we cumulatively throw away on Christmas day? According to a recent report, Britain throws out approximately 227,000 miles of wrapping paper – which would get us pretty close to the moon!
That doesn’t take into account the millions of plastic food wrappers for your turkey and Christmas pudding, which all together make it a very costly day for the environment. So here are a few tips to keep your waste to a minimum:
- Make sure you compost where possible, if you aren’t going to eat it – don’t bin it! But be careful with cooked food though as that can attract rats to your compost heap. Get yourself a composter and put those potato peelings in there, plus you can subtly throw a few unwanted Brussels in there as well when no one is looking!
- Gift tags are always a costly little extra. £2 a time for ten little gift tags that will get thrown away within 10 minutes of present opening frenzy. Try creating your own gift tags from old Christmas cards instead. This gives you a few extra quid for other things, but be careful about who sent you the card, you don’t want to send your mum her card as a gift tag…
- If you are going to use reams of wrapping paper, make sure it gets recycled. Give your local authority a ring to check they can accept wrapping paper (some don’t because it is often dyed / laminated which some recycling mills won’t be able to deal with), if they do make sure you bag it up ready for collection.
- Buy recycled wrapping paper in the first place!
It’s hard to find presents for some people – you know the family members who have everything, or don’t seem to appreciate your thoughtful gift. Here are a few green gift ideas to make your Christmas shopping that little bit easier:
- For those who like a good gadget for Christmas, you could do a lot worse than look at our array of solar chargers, and energy saving appliances. There are some really cool, practical gifts that could make someone’s Christmas here.
- Our best selling product of the year has been our infrared heating panels – they really are an excellent source of energy efficient heating, and they look cool too!
- If that doesn’t sound your thing, remember our Christmas book list has a great range of books for your green minded family and friends.
- Of course, you could try giving someone the gift of your expertise or time. This is a great way to do something a little more personal for someone, and avoids creating more ‘stuff’ to be disposed of in landfill. It might sound cheesy, but some might genuinely appreciate you giving up valuable time to do something really helpful.
Whatever you get up to this Christmas, have a great time and we wish you a very Green (and happy!) New Year.