Reducing Holiday Waste

Between decorations, gift wrap, left over food, and activities to keep the kids entertained while they are out of school, the holidays can really produce a lot of waste. Think about it. Chances are you’re putting much more out at the curb during the holidays than any other time of the year. This year, make an effort to cut back and use wisely with some waste reducing tips from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

  1. No doubt the amount of shopping you do greatly increases around the holidays. From grocery stores to shopping malls, the amount of plastic and paper shopping bags can really add up. And where do those bags go each year? Landfills. Help cut back on the number of paper and plastic bags by bringing reusable cloth bags for all your holiday shopping. And if you’re buying something small? Tell the clerk not to worry about bagging it up. You’ve got the environment to think about.
  2. Why go out and spend a ton of cash on fancy new wrapping paper every year? Recycle paper from the year before or kick it old-school with newspaper, magazines, and my personal favorite, the funny pages! Get really creative and find your loved one’s favorite comic strip for the front of their gift!
  3. Remove the front cover of old greeting cards and use them again! Turn them into postcard-type holiday greetings or use them on presents as tags.
  4. Determine the durability of a product before you buy it. A gift might seem nice but it can be even better if it’s something that will last for years to come!

What are some other waste reducing ideas to help make this holiday season a little more environmentally friendly?

photo from flickr: andrewarchy