The winter holidays are just around the corner, and for many that means buying last-minute gifts, cooking and baking holiday treats, organizing parties, wrapping gifts, and house decorating. While all of these can be exciting, they can also be a burden to the environment if not done correctly. Make your holiday season even more green by using these 5 easy tips to be eco-friendly over the holidays.
1) Use eco-friendly wrapping paper
- Wrapping paper gets ripped off of the gifts and thrown out after one use, leaving excess waste among the festivities. Most store-bought wrapping paper is not recyclable and therefore ends up in landfills. Instead of purchasing this non-recyclable wrapping paper, here is your chance to get creative. This season, wrap your presents in reusable boxes, wrapping paper made out of recycled materials, or paper and boxes from previous years. You can also make ribbons and bows using the scraps of wrapping paper. Or even better, make your own wrapping paper from wax paper or cloth, or leave your presents unwrapped.
2) Add organic and local foods to your holiday feast
- Support local farmers and local food store owners this winter by purchasing your turkey and vegetables locally. Not only does local food taste better, but you are also contributing to your local economy and being environmentally friendly.
3) Use LED lights
- Light up your house and Christmas tree with LED lights this holiday season. LED lights are far more efficient than other light bulbs; upgrading to LED lights will not only use far less energy, but it will also drastically reduce your electric bill.
4) Don't use disposable dishes or cutlery
- The holiday season includes family and friend parties and gatherings, which almost always includes holiday treats. Reduce waste this holiday season by sticking to actual dishes and silverware rather than paper and plastic dishes. It will make the clean-up more timely, but will be more eco-friendly.
5) Adjust your thermostat
Save energy over the holidays by limiting your use of heat. Turn down your thermostat when you are asleep or not at home. Instead, bundle up in layers of blankets with a mug of hot chocolate.