Christmas is one of the most festive times of year for many people and includes indulging in many aspects such as food and presents. However, it’s most definitely not the most eco-friendly time of the year. If you are conscious of your carbon footprint this festive period, we have come up with some top tips on how to have an eco friendly Christmas.
Eco friendly Christmas trees
Many of us during the festive season have got into the habit of purchasing freshly cut Christmas trees. We do understand that they smell absolutely delicious and make your home smell extremely Christmassy however this can still be achieved with an artificial tree and some candles dotted around your home. Don’t be tempted by the Christmas shopping experience, thousands of trees are damaged to create your perfect Christmas decorations and then as soon as the festive season is over these trees are taken to landfill sites where they sit and decay.
By having an artificial Christmas tree, you can reuse every year and not have to worry about how many trees you will be damaging. Another benefit of an artificial Christmas tree is that you do not have the hassle of having to clean away the endless needles that drop. You will save yourself money in the long run and might find that the extra money can go on buying your special someone something sweet this year. They are also extremely easy to assemble and store away; you also do not have to worry about transporting them.
Everyone receives a somewhat excessive amount of Christmas cards whether it be from loved ones people you work with or clients. You should think about sending Christmas cards online through 123greetings; they are a great company who will send your ecards helping save the environment that little bit more. You will also be surprised just how many Christmas cards are then taken to landfill sites as soon as people are done with them. Tonnes of cards are left each year, and we could be getting creative with them. Get crafty with the family and make Christmas decorations out of your cards. A great way to make your home look festive is to make card garlands allowing family and friends to read when they visit. If you really don’t want to keep your cards ensure that you are recycling all paper waste or purchase recycled cards and try to cut down on plastic packaging.
Over the Christmas period, we are all renowned for overcooking and indulging a little too much in good food. However, a significant amount of food is wasted each year and results in thousands of pounds lost to unwanted food. We suggest that when you are planning your Christmas meal try and be strict with yourself and only make enough food that will most likely be eaten. This way you can still fit in the cheeseboard later on in the evening. Don’t purchase food items you know your family might not eat, only purchase food you know you and your family love that way you most definitely know it will be consumed.
Christmas is all about mooching in front of the TV and watching plenty of festive films. We can’t suggest that you completely go cold turkey because it simply just wouldn’t be Christmas without Christmas films. However, we do recommend that you bring out the board games and bring everyone together. Show your competitive streak, its also a great way to warm your home up, when your adrenaline is pumping you instantly become warmer. A substantial amount of energy is wasted in the UK over the December period, so do a little something to reduce your energy consumption.
Let there be light
Lights are what make Christmas glow! Everyone loves walking down that street that go crazy for Christmas lights but if you think about it, exactly how much energy must they be wasting. Festive lights offer a variety of different solar powered Christmas lights, perfect for reducing your energy consumption and working your way to having an eco friendly Christmas.
Recycle gift bags, if you don’t already any gift bags you receive try and keep in good condition, they will be perfect for next year. The same goes for wrapping paper, glossy, glittery or metallic wrapping paper is extremely hard to recycle so you might want to recycle some of your own. We do understand that this can be difficult especially as you tend to get overexcited when opening presents.
Rather than going out shopping every weekend on the lead up to Christmas why not shop online. You might find multiple things on one website saving you a few pound in petrol. Give people green gifts or make homemade presents such as baked goods or craft items.
Make natural decorations
Making natural decorations can be a fun and rememberable experience. You can get the whole family involved. Rather than buying a brand new centrepiece get people to make them out of old pinecones, leaves and twigs. You can make candle wreaths to beautifully decorate your Christmas table. Get a little glitter; you can make adorable eco friendly bauble from natural and recyclable items but simply sprucing them up.
You can simply reduce your carbon footprint this Christmas by doing a few small things around your home. Consider why you really need a real Christmas tree, by having an artificial one your saving yourself not only money but also time and hassle. They are comfortably compact and can be easily assembled, making Christmas decorating a little quicker.
Get creative this Christmas with by revamping old decorations rather than throwing them away. You can also make adorable decorative baubles and table pieces with natural items that you find on a weekend walk. Don’t be shy, sprinkle with glitter and get everyone involved in the decoration process.
Think about what you can recycle and what you are wasting on paper, cards and wrapping materials. You might be able to reuse wrapping material from previous years if you can refrain yourself from getting overly excited and ripping paper completely.
Finally, if you really do want to become eco friendly this Christmas, you may want to look at changing your residential gas plan. Look at a provider with renewable energy sources and improve your carbon footprint.