Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

Environmental Tuesday: Planning for the Holidays


Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
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O.K. now that Halloween is over, the stores are filled with Yuletide tunes, people are buzzing about Black Friday insanity, and the stores are filled with all kinds of Holiday decorations. Here are a few quick tips to decrease your holiday carbon footprint.

1) Consider sending holiday cards over the interwebs. I hate this idea because holiday cards are some of the only good snail mail I receive all year long, but it will save on paper and the energy used to deliver your cards. If you can’t stand the thought, at least use recycled paper, and be sure to recycle the cards you receive.

2) Use reusable or recycled wrapping paper. If you’re like my grandparents, you neatly folded up every piece of wrapping paper you ever used and put it in a drawer, and never used it again. You can use newspaper, recycled paper, cloth bags, or a pretty extra piece of fabric you have around the house to wrap up your gifts. Here’s a fun video with some good ideas if you want to get super-crafy:

3) If you do the tree thing, don’t feel too guilty. Christmas tree farms are not the enemy. Just be sure to leave your tree out for mulch composting after the holidays. You may also consider a live tree to plant later (though honestly, in most parts of this country, January 1st is not exactly prime dig-a-hole-in-the-ground-and-plant time).

4) E-cycle: If you’re expecting to upgrade some of your electronics via some killer gifts, make sure you dispose of your old ones in a recyclable way. If they are not fit for donation or resale, check the EPA’s guidelines for E-cycling them.

5) Buy eco-friendly gifts. I love to shop handmade, and from the green sections of retail websites. I’ll be working up a list of what Design Public has to offer in this arena in the coming weeks.  Here’s one of my many faves, the k studio Birds Pillow: