Well hello, we’ve blinked and suddenly the festive season is upon us (well that’s how it feels like for me!). How the bloody hell did that happen? As with every year, it’s always nice to get into the Christmas spirit. Buy gifts for loved ones and overall reflect on the year that’s passed. Well perhaps not this year, we’ll leave the reflecting out, shall we?! But, what we often can forget is the need to be a little more sustainable during this period.
As Christmas often sees a wave of mass-consumption and with it, an extortionate amount of waste. So, without damping your festive cheer, I wanted to talk through little ways to stay low waste, without the need to sacrifice too much in the way of having a good time!
Gifts are of course a very important part of Christmas for the most of us. It’s a time to show the people you love most just how much they mean to you. But often, the over-purchasing of unnecessary items causes millions of tons of waste each year. Ask yourselves ‘will they actually use this?’ With this, shopping small business this year is truly the best way, as often shopping small means supporting an individuals livelihood rather than lining the pockets of too-rich CEOs. It’s the most ethical way, with smaller companies often a lot more sustainable in terms of packaging too; make Etsy (as well as other sites!) your gift shopping destination this year.
Wrapping your gifts in recyclable wrapping paper should be your priority in being Sustainable this Christmas. As most shiny wrapping paper is in fact lined with plastic -a trick I’ve learnt is, if the paper starts to unfold after scrunching = contains plastic. if it scrunches and stays tight = paper. As it is wrapped with plastic, it is impossible to split from the paper – as it is of course so thin. It makes it completely unrecyclable and ends up in Landfill.
With this, try using biodegradable sellotape, brown paper type cuts out the use of plastic making it a lot kinder to the planet. (I do apologies for my use of plastic sellotape in the above images, I have a small roll I’m using up and then I’m moving on to solely paper tape!)
Food Waste & Plastic Use
Finally, food. often the best part of Christmas. It’s simple really, don’t over buy, freeze leftovers and AVOID PLASTIC SELECTION BOXES. The ratio of chocolate to plastic is eye opening, when you consider it!
And there we are, a handful of suggestions to make your Christmas a little more Sustainable this year. Personally, I don’t see these as entirely disturbing to normal tradition. It is simply being more mindful of your actions and more aware of the plastic that is generated alongside the festivities. With this, I hope you can be a little kinder to the planet this December!