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Ideas for Greening Your Christmas
Are you dreaming of a green Christmas? If you are looking for ways to reduce your Christmas carbon footprint, here are some tips for a sustainable festive season:
- Deck the halls green: Dress your home with greenery from the garden and organic seasonal fruit that can be composted after Christmas. If you do love Christmas ornaments, go for quality over quantity. Rather than stocking up on hundreds of cheap plastic ornaments, introduce a new tradition into your family by asking your children to choose just one special ornament each year.
- Save a tree, save on CO²: Seek out alternatives to cutting down the trees that are absorbing carbon and producing oxygen for our planet. Instead, use a potted Australian native plant that can be planted in the garden. Or get creative: try painting your own Christmas tree on a window with removable paints, or making a tree out of recyclable products. If you do want a tree, go for a good quality artificial tree that you can keep for a lifetime. A one-off purchase of an artificial tree can save petrol otherwise used for annual trips to the local tree farm.
- Go green on the gift-wrap: Present your gifts in fabric that can be reused, such as tea towels, cloth bags or tables. Or use recycled paper, children’s paintings or even attractive pictures torn from magazines. Ribbons and embellishments can make even the plainest brown paper present look spectacular. And keep the ribbon, bags and tags to use again. If every family reused just 0.6 metres of holiday ribbon, the 61,000 kilometres of ribbon saved could tie a bow around the entire planet.
- Purchase practical presents: Buy gifts that promote sustainable living, such as seedlings for a vegetable patch, bicycle equipment or homemade Christmas goodies. Encourage your friends and family to take part in a Kris Kringle instead of purchasing lots of unwanted gifts. Or give a gift that can be experienced, such as tickets to a concert or sporting match, and save on wrapping and old and broken gifts ending up in landfill.
- Switch off those lights: Keep Christmas lights on for a set period each night to reduce energy consumption. And consider LED lights, which are 90 per cent more efficient than traditional Christmas lights.
- Send sustainable seasons greetings: Consider personalised e-cards instead of the paper variety. If you are sending out cards, then purchase charity cards, or make your own from recycled paper.
- Go local for Christmas lunch: Buy locally-grown or organic produce for Christmas lunch, and check that you’re not purchasing fish on the endangered list.
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