Guest Post: How To Have An Eco-Friendly Christmas

With all the excitement of the Christmas holiday, it can be easy to forget the green initiatives we use the rest of the year in our daily lives. Even if we do try to implement them, the commercialism of the holiday doesn’t exactly lend itself to being eco-friendly. There are ways, however, to be green this Christmas season:

1. Reduce your paper waste.

There are many ways to reduce the amount of paper waste you use during Christmas. Don’t over-wrap items, or use sturdy gift boxes that can be repurposed as storage containers and boxes for next year’s gifts. Try not to decorate with paper items, either. If you send out Christmas cards, try to use recycled paper, or better yet, don’t send out cards at all. Replace them with paperless e-cards or friendly phone calls.

2. Buy Fair Trade.

Fair Trade supports eco-friendly initiatives around the world, so lend your own support and buy Fair Trade gifts this year. Fair Trade products run the gamut from coffee and food products to linens, clothing, and alcohol. A simple Google search will turn up hundreds of licensed partners to help you find anything and everything you need for holiday gifts.

3. Buy local and handmade.

If you can’t or don’t want to go the Fair Trade route, you can reduce your environmental impact by giving local and handmade gifts. Seek out artisans in your area for gifts. You may find them at local festivals and fairs, farmer’s markets, and even through Etsy searches. Buying local reduces how much energy is expended to get your product to you, and handmade means significantly less energy went into making your products.

4. Use eco-friendly decorations.

Instead of using plastic or paper decor that will just get thrown away, try using natural items. This can include pinecones, potted plants, beeswax candles, and more. If want to get really creative, you can even repurpose old items like CDs and old Christmas cards can be used to make beautiful decorations. This isn’t just eco-friendly, but also family-friendly, as well.

5. Recycle!

When the holidays are over, don’t toss those pounds of cardboard and wrapping paper in the trash. Recycle them, along with any plastic, glass, or metal that may have accumulated. If you don’t have a recycling system in your hometown, try to get together with other families ahead of time to carpool and take your load to the nearest recycling center.

6. Give back.

Support green initiatives by giving back this holiday season. Donate to your favorite charity or adopt a child from an Angel Tree. Volunteer at a local shelter, nursing home, or hospital by spending time with residents, helping decorate, or even bringing a holiday treat. Being green is all about supporting compassion for the earth and its residents.

Go green this Christmas and make it even better than ever.

Nicole Rodgers has been blogging in the Green, technology, and fitness industries for three years. Last year Nicole decided to have a green holiday this year. She purchased ecofriendly ornaments, gifts, and etc goods in order to be green. After Christmas Nicole always makes sure to check out any cyber Monday sales in order to save money on eco gifts and ornaments for next year.

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