We all know that Christmas is usually seen as a time of excess, this doesn’t mean that we can’t have our fruit cake and eat it, and still be kind to the planet. A growing number of people are bearing this in mind when planning their festivities, and there are now numerous ways in which you can enjoy Christmas and keep your environmental conscience clear. If you want a happy, sustainable Christmas, here’s a few suggestions;
- Rent a Christmas tree. This next January, seven million actual trees will be dumped instead of being recycled. While it's great that many people are trying to do their part for the environment by recycling, it’s possible to take it a step further this year by renting a real Christmas tree from a British farm. Nordmann Firs are available to be delivered from companies like Love a Christmas Tree for as little as £20. During the Christmas period, the renter is responsible for the tree's upkeep, but in the new year, the tree service will come and take it away to be replanted ready for next year. If you'd rather buy a tree than rent one, you can show that you care about the environment by buying one that was grown as close to you as feasible. You then have the option to replant that in your garden, or at least recycle it.
- Invest in tree decorations…or make your own. This is definitely a case of quality over quantity, and well-made tree baubles will last for years if treated and stored in the right way. Better still, make your own eco-friendly tree decorations. If you are feeling creative, try making alternatives to plastic decorations, and invest in those made from repurposed wood, fabric, or glass instead.
- Don't use tinsel. The small lengths of plastic that inevitably find their way all over the house and probably into the local ecosystem. Make an attempt at creating your own ornaments instead. How about some tinsel made of popcorn, pine cones, dried fruit, origami, or other creative materials? Using a bit of creativity will make these look great, and they are also good for the planet.
- Give vouchers. They may sound like a bit of a nothing-burger, but vouchers are actually a great way to gift-give. It is reckoned that over half of adults receive something that they don’t want for Christmas, and much of it ends up in land-fill. Giving vouchers and ‘experience’ gifts is becoming increasingly preferred and is also good for the planet by cutting down on packaging.
- Get eco-refills. Planet friendly refill packs are a great way to give someone their favourite smell or body wash to top up their existing dispenser and be kind to the planet too. Eco-refills are typically composed of recycled materials that can go through the process many times more. We at Hawkins and Brimble have a whole range of eco-refills, head over to the shop and stock up.
- Start composting. Christmas has always featured food and feasting, and this invariably leads to people having too much on their plate, much of which then goes to waste. You can cut down on this with clever and considered shopping, and avoid hastily tossing out food that has gone bad or that you know will spoil before you can eat it. Invest in a creative countertop composter or make an effort to repurpose your leftovers.
We at Hawkins and Brimble wish you all a happy Christmas, and hope that you will join us in cutting back on the surplus food, decorations, gifts, and packaging, and making the world a better place for everyone.
Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year, from all of us.