Christmas is fast approaching and so are celebrations, parties, presents and gathering of families. However how beautiful this seems, the negative effect can be obvious once attention is paid to it, this is not to say in any way that family gatherings, exchanging presents and partying is a bad thing, just to say that the way some of these thing are done affect the environment poorly. Things as family gatherings increases the carbon footprint, exchange of presents mean more gift wrappers transported to landfills and parties mean disposable cups and paper plates to be thrashed. 

Choosing to live in a sustainable way can be a bit hard during celebrations period and oh, we might feel guilty about it. However enough of the sticky guilt as this article discusses 10 easy tips to follow to make your Christmas more sustainable and eco-friendly.

  1.     Use LED Bulbs

It is no news that led bulbs save energy more than the orthodox lights and can help you in saving quite an amount on your energy bills! As an added advantage, the LEDs release minute heat and last for several hours, while it is also very unlikely that any one of the light could burn out however if it does, the rest of the lights readily work to keep its housing shining.

LED Lights can be bought online, retail shops or from a distributor.

  1. Give Eco-friendly gifts

You truly do not have much power over the gifts you receive but you certainly do possess ultimate power over the sort of gifts you give out. By giving gifts that can be experienced such as trips, vacationor even hiking, you can reduce the amount of gift wrappers and still win favor in the sight of the receiver. Ideas such as tickets to the receiver’s favorite band concert, gym membership, tickets to a sporting activity or lessons of some type essential to the receiver which ticks the zero waste box.

On the other hand, recycled wrappers can be used and re-used gift bags.

  1. Make Gatherings more Sustainable

Sustainability is what most people are striving for this year, however when it comes to gatherings whether family, friends, or colleagues from the work place at end-of-the-year party, they are at loss on what to do.

Substituting disposable paper plates and cups for the conventional plates might seem like a lot of work when it is time to clean but when you see the loads of disposable utensils being transported to landfills every year, the stress of cleaning would definitely be worth it. It might also help that for big gatherings; people can be employed for the cleaning of the used utensils in the process creating jobs for others in the spirit of Christmas!

  1. Charity

One thing I have learned over time is the fact that you don’t need to be requested off or be termed as a philanthropist by the society before you can give. If there’s a way of helping the environment remain ‘green’ in this season, charity also stands out as it ticks the human, social and ecological significance of sustainability. This does not only exhibit sustainable acts but also help to put smiles on the faces of the recipients wherever they might be.

Helping out with either money, gift items or even volunteering all stands out as they all render assistance in a form.

  1. Christmas trees

Although it may look like artificial trees are more sustainable when compared to a new tree removal each year, ‘they’ the plastic trees create a lot of waste even if they are recycled when they have to be packed up after a few years of use. 

You might argue that using real trees will affect the environment negatively, however there can be a balance once you get involved in the, ‘Plant a Tree’ project which is done by several individuals and organizations at cheap rates round the world. This process is even more promising in sustainability attainment in cases where you plant about 4 trees in a year and cut down one for Christmas. That’s 3 trees planted with the addition of receiving carbon dioxide to give you oxygen!

  1. Offer Support to Environmentally Friendly Groups

We get that some people get even busier during the holidays as a result of their work, a thing that will assist the environment while they continue working is their support to environmentally friendly groups. Your donations will make an impact whether small or large.

  1. Sustainable Partying

The amount of leftovers at some parties or gatherings that go to the trash can be sometimes appalling. It would be better for you to make an estimation of the guests arriving so as not to exceed the needed amount of food by a large gap leading to less waste by a huge margin.

Even so, the leftovers can be packaged and given out to places of your choice like Shelters or the police officers in your community working tirelessly even during the holidays, or even freeze the leftovers for later.

  1. Travels

The fuel consumption of a plane is usually more during take-off and landing. Although this cannot be totally avoided, it can be regulated if you are traveling to places accessible by buses or trains. 

On the other hand, there are a number of airlines that provide the opportunity to counterweigh carbon discharge into the atmosphere by investing in sustainability projects or planting trees.

  1. Recycle the parts of your old Phones

Approximately 130 million phones are deposited in landfills yearly causing hazardous elements such as lead and mercury to take space in our landfills thereby polluting the environment.

You can drop the old phone at Staples store as part of the phone recycling platform or sell it to one of the various buyback platforms.

  1. Patronize local farmers

This does not only reduce carbon footprint in that you don’t have to travel long distances to get stuff that is available in your community but also does your community good. This is a method of offering support to local farmers and being sustainable to the planet at large.

So there you have it! 10 tips to be more sustainable this Christmas, no more guilt on not being sustainable and Merry Christmas in advance!