Who doesn’t love the holiday season? Friends and family gathered to spend time with each other, cozy movie nights complete with hot cocoa, and giving gifts to one another. It is such a busy and exciting time of the year that we often forget to take into account the effects of our activities.
I know that during December, I’m mostly focused on completing my Christmas gift list for what I’m getting my family and friends. I hardly even think about the effects of what the holiday activities are causing the environment.
There are some simple, yet effective ways to reduce our waste during the holiday season. None of which require us to completely change our lifestyles, just a few adjustments here and there.
Something I never thought of was the impact of online shopping. If you buy gifts online, do so in advance so you can choose ground shipping as opposed to air travel. Ground shipping takes way less fuel than an air shipping does.
Wrapping paper is another big cause of waste during the holidays. 8,000 tons of wrapping paper are used each year for the holidays. This equals roughly 50,000 trees! If you want to reduce the amount of paper waste, opt for more sustainable ways of wrapping gifts. Try newspaper or magazine wrapping paper (the comics section make for super cute gift wrap!) Or use gift bags so you can reuse them for the years after.
It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of the holidays that we forget about our environmental impact, but if we take a few of these facts into account during the holiday season, we can make a big difference.