Green Christmas: prepare your home for a green Christmas
Christmas truly is a wonderful time of year, filled with joy, celebrations, gifts and loved ones. There’s little better than sitting down with your loved ones and indulging in Christmas dinner. However, we are often so busy/excited/exhausted with it all that it becomes easy to overlook the impacts of our celebrations. Each year, the UK produces 30% more waste at Christmas time – throwing away two million turkeys, 74 million mince pies and 17 million Brussel sprouts.
One of Uncommon’s founding principles is sustainability, we understand that as a society we have a responsibility to the planet and what better way to show our gratitude than during the Christmas season by cutting down on our waste.
Each year in the UK eight million Christmas trees are brought for our home, with a huge seven million of these trees ending up in landfill. Thankfully garden centres have cottoned on to how much wastage this causes, so you can now find Christmas-tree hire services, such as London Christmas Tree Rental (just remember to order early). The good news is that you get a real Christmas tree and it is delivered to your door and collected to be reused next year – a win all round. If you do get a tree of your own though, don’t forget to check its FSC-certified.
For many of us the joy of Christmas is seeing presents painstakingly wrapped, some exceptionally poorly (looking at you dad) underneath the tree. It gets even better when tearing into them to see what’s inside. But every year the UK throws away a staggering 226,800 miles of wrapping paper, enough to wrap around the world nine times.
This year why not try Furoshiki, an ancient Japanese tradition for creatively wrapping just about anything using fabric. Best of all the fabric can be reused each year. If you are looking for expert guidance here’s minimalist Marie Kondo demonstrating the art.
On average, each person in the UK will send and receive a minimum of 17 Christmas cards. It takes one tree to make 3,000 Christmas cards, so the one billion Christmas cards we send each year need 33 million trees. We can all agree that those 33 million trees are best left in the ground, so why not try using a service such as PaperLessPost. If you are desperate to send a physical card, companies such as the Eco-Friendly Card Shop provide FSC-certified cards and are carbon neutral.
An easy way to reduce the amount of plastic used at Christmas is to reuse decorations from previous years, simply package them back up and place them in the attic for next year. If you are feeling adventurous why not head to your local park to forage pinecones and holly to add to your decorations.
You can also reduce your natural resource consumption this Christmas by cutting down on Christmas lights. Switching over to LED lights uses up to 95% less energy than traditional lights and don’t forget to switch them off when you go to bed.
Now to the most important part – Christmas dinner. A great way to have a greener Christmas is to use Christmas dinner as a chance to support your local farmers, green grocers and butchers. Buying local means you’ll use fewer food miles and ensure you are getting a high-quality product. You could also try some of these wonderful vegetarian options in-place of the traditional meat-filled feasts.
Happy Green Christmas!
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