I’m dreaming of a green Christmas…

When you’re wrapped up in the excitement of the holiday season, keeping sustainability in mind can be difficult, though necessary to enjoy all the festivities without creating additional waste.

Even Santa is supporting sustainable initiatives this year, he needs to travel at 2,340,000 mph to reach every home in the world on Christmas Eve, so appreciates your help in making more greener choices to sequest the CO2 from his journey!

Just a few simple changes this Christmas can make a big difference on the environment. From sourcing sustainable Christmas cards and checking you have recyclable wrapping paper, to finding out how to recycle fairy lights and how to reduce food waste, give the planet the gift of sustainability this year.

Check out our recycling tips below for some easy ways to have a green Christmas.

Food, glorious food…

Some of us can be guilty of eating too much over the festive period. It is important not to waste food. Try buying locally sourced food, shorter supply chains are less likely to generate food waste, and less food miles. Make a list in advance of food shopping and stick to it!

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Why not look up some recipes to make something else out of the leftovers too, for example leftover vegetables can make a nice curry, or apples can be made into jam! Or you could search for food sharing platforms online or give any leftover food to neighbours or someone in need.

Don’t forget to reuse your jam jars and bottles too over the festive period.

Think before disposing…

Avoid sending wrapping paper to landfill this Christmas.  Before you recycle it, why not breathe new life into your discarded gift wrapping?  Use the wrapping paper to use as filler packaging to protect gifts in transit or consider using plain wrapping paper that can be utilised throughout the year to wrap birthday or anniversary presents.

Thousands of lights are discarded each year in Europe. Before disposing of yours this year, check in with friends, neighbours, or online marketplaces to see if anyone can make use of them.

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Sending Christmas cards is a tradition for many of us. Why not start a new tradition between loved ones this year, and send an e-card, or make a charitable donation instead of sending cards?   If you decide to send cards, always opt for glitter free versions.  Glitter hinders the recycling process as the plastic used in glitter can contaminate other fibre recycling.   Always check that the cards are recyclable and recycle any you receive after Christmas.

Tree-mendous ideas

With over 60 million Christmas trees grown each year in Europe, it is important to dispose of them after the festive period in a sustainable way.

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Real Christmas trees are recyclable and can be made into chippings which are used in parks or woodland areas. Or why not replant your Christmas tree, meaning you can enjoy your tree for years to come.

Some countries now offer rent a tree services, where you have a tree delivered in a pot, you use it for Christmas and then it is picked up and replanted.  If not reused or recycled, trees can end up in landfill which is costly, environmentally, and financially. 

Give sustainable gifts…

Shopping sensibly is a necessity, and where possible consider purchasing those mad of sustainably sourced materials over plastic or opt for things that can be passed on.  Or support local makes by purchasing a handmade gift.

Buying second hand is a great option, or perhaps give consumables, charity donations or local experiences as presents too.  

Love the planet this Christmas…

Follow the eco-friendly tips above to have a sustainable Christmas by recycling more, switching to greener alternatives, and sending less to waste.