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How to have an eco-friendly Christmas

Esther Cole, 5th Dec 2019
Tags: Life Blog Christmas Environment

We all know that we need to look after this good old planet that we call home. After all, it's the only one we have.

This year I've been much more conscious and aware of how my actions and choices have a wider effect. And with that, I started thinking about Christmas, all of the wrapping paper, the unnecessary plastic, and the trees. Is it possible to make my most favourite time of year a little more eco-friendly?

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Trees

Who doesn't love decorating the tree, it's one of my favourite parts of getting everything ready.

I grew up with an artificial tree. We'd get it out of the attic every year, and I'd have to put all of the branches into their colour coded piles and unfurl each branch.

Somehow my big sisters convinced me this was the best job. But as I got older, I definitely started to realise that maybe it wasn't. If you're from an artificial tree family, you'll know the struggle.

We later switched to getting a real tree, and I was so excited. They smell so good, but the amount of vacuuming you need to do is next level.

christmas tree

I did some research to see how we could make our Christmas trees more eco-friendly. And here's what I found: 

  1. If you have a fake tree, keep on using it and make it last as long as possible. And if you do want to buy one, why not get a pre-loved tree? They are just as good. 
  2. If you're buying a real tree, make sure it's been grown sustainably. You find one by looking out for the FSC-certification logo. Then after you've used it, make sure you recycle it. Most councils will take your tree away, they often shred them to make wood chips for local parks and paths.

Or if possible, grow your own tree. Yes, this will probably take a while, but if you look after it you can plant it back in the garden for next year too. 

Food

How about going veggie or vegan for Christmas?

I know pigs-in-blankets are insane, but with more and more of us becoming aware of the effect that consuming meat has on the planet, making an effort to swap it out for some veggie alternatives is probably a great place to start.

Christmas food

If you really can't resist, try and buy organic and free-range meat; ideally from small scale farms if you can.

And while you're at it, make sure you look out for all of that pesky plastic packaging when you're doing your shop. Buy your fruit and veg loose, and cut food waste by freezing any leftovers you have.

Wrapping paper

Wrapping presents can make you use a lot of plastic, and let's not even mention the sticky tape. So why not try old fashioned brown paper and string? 

Wrapping a present

You can even decorate with homemade tags, or if you're any good at baking, I've seen people make biscuit tags. This is probably a step too far for me, but who knows, maybe I'll be adventurous this year?

Hope you all have an amazing and peace filled Christmas!

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