As much as Christmas is the time for giving, relaxing, and most importantly eating lots of good food, I think we can all agree on the fact that it isn’t the most environmentally cautious time of the year. December is the time of the year where the most pressure is put on the environment with CO2 emissions increasing dramatically during this period. Being more environmentally aware around the festive period is something we should all be considering, but don’t worry, it doesn’t take away from any of the fun or festivities!
1. Artificial Trees
Here’s an astonishing fact, it is estimated that around 6 million Christmas trees are sent to landfill every year in the UK alone. If you don’t want to miss out on having a real tree make sure you opt for one that has been sustainably grown and in a way that hasn’t damaged the environment. Unfortunately artificial trees aren’t much better either, seeing as they are made from plastic. However, if you have an artificial tree continue to use it until it’s seen better days, then when replacing consider possibly investing in a pre-loved tree, much better for the environment!
2. Cut Down On TV
Here’s another fun fact, wow I’m full of them today. It is estimated that the average person watches up to 30 hours a week of telly throughout the festive period. Thats a lot of energy needed to power all these tellies and watch hours. I for one, know that during the Christmas period I watch so much more telly, therefore this year, I’ll be making a more conscious effort to cut down on my own watch time.
3. Eco Friendly Gifts
When shopping for loved ones, consider buying environmentally friendly gifts, or even shop for gifts with less packaging. Whenever Christmas rolls round again, once my brothers and I are done with the present opening, there is always so much left over waste, mainly unnecessary plastic packaging. When shopping for gifts, try to opt for the option that has less packaging, resulting in less waste.
4. Recyclable Wrapping Paper
This is something we can all be doing and theres no excuse not to! I didn’t know this until recently, but most wrapping paper can’t actually be recycled, which is why this year I am opting for brown parcel paper. This can all be put straight into the recycling – it’s such an easy step to take into having a more eco-friendly Christmas. You don’t just have to get plain brown parcel paper either, I know Waitrose have a selection of recyclable papers on offer at the moment. Budget friendly too.
5. Cut Down On Meat Consumption
This is one that has been drilled into us all over the past year or so, that cutting meat consumption is a m must when it comes to being more environmentally aware. Also a lot tastier. I’m not saying you need to cut out mean completely from your Christmas, as I know that isn’t always possible, but replace a couple of the meat options with a vegetarian alternative, you never know, you might be surprised! Not only this, but if you are consuming meat, make sure it is organic meat, the benefits of that are fairly self explanatory.
6. Cut Down On Food Waste
My Dad normally cooks for 11 on Christmas Day, so you can imagine how much food that produces. You can also imagine how much waste it produces. My family are brilliant at reducing our food waste. Most of the veg, and potatoes from Christmas Day will be saved for bubble and squeak on Boxing Day, with left over turkey of course. Buying a turkey for 15 people will always leave us with loads, so we use the left overs for sandwiches, risottos and even curry. There are so many recipes out there that will get you using up all of your left overs resulting in a lot less food waste!
I’d like to think of myself as very environmentally aware, I’ve always had an interest in the environment and think that we can all be doing so much more to help reduce the impact we are having day to day on our planet, considering how easy it is to do so as well!
What are your tips for a more environmentally friendly Christmas?!
All my love,