Twelve Tiny Tips to Lessen Our Environmental Footprint at Christmas
I did a little diggin’ on the old internet and came up with this list of 12 tiny tips on how we can lessen our footprint on the planet this time of year.
#1) Buy less stuff for people who don’t need it or want it.
#2) Spend time versus money on people who both need and want it.
#3) Remember to take re-usable shopping bags to the mall and grocery store…really, it’s not that difficult.
#4) Same with jaunts (of which there may be many) to the booze-shop…use a handy-dandy cloth bag that holds multiple bottles versus getting a paper bag for each and every bottle (of which there may be many…just sayin’), each and every time.
#5) If you can’t ease up on the wrapping paper (I suspect some people are genetically predisposed to being addicted to wrapping presents), then at least try and recycle (or re-use) as much as possible after the fact.
#6) Except for the shiny stuff…most metallic wrapping paper can’t be recycled. So yeah, that’s right – don’t buy it in the first place.
#7) Think about packaging of products. That’s how I spend my evenings – thinking about packaging. Sure, I could be watching Game of Thrones or having hot sex with an Argentinian polo player. But no, I sit on my couch and think about where all the billions of pounds of packaging are going to end up after Christmas. Yes, Juan, you guessed correctly: the landfill.
#8) When shopping for said products (that are bound to have far too much packaging) and feel the need for a little pick-me-up (because your Christmas shopping list is bigger than you are) and you swing by your favourite coffee shop to buy your low fat-mocha-whatever, for the love of God, remember to take your own re-useable coffee mug instead of getting yet another disposable paper cup that is destined for the landfill. Sigh.
#9) Haven’t sent out Christmas cards yet? Good. Don’t bother (unless you’re buying my recycled Christmas cards). How’s this for a sobering stat: the 2.65 billion Christmas cards sold each year in the U.S. could fill a football field 10 stories high. Aye Karumba.
#10) Back to wrapping presents: take it easy on the ribbon, will ya? But if you can’t bear the thought of giving a gift that has no ribbon, then at least try and keep the ribbon (to re-use) after the unwrapping frenzy on Christmas morn. Here’s why: if every family reused just two feet of holiday ribbon, the 38,000 miles of ribbon saved could tie a bow around the entire planet.
#11) For more great ideas on how to have a greener Christmas, check out the Eartheasy website.
#12) Find the fun in re-gifting. For a laugh, check out Tact, Timing and Titillation: The Tao of Re-gifting and view the “Label Maker” clip from an old Seinfeld episode.
Thanks for reading and I hope you find these tips of use! If you have any other suggestions on how to lessen our environmental footprint this time of year, I’d love to hear them.
P.S. If you happen to have a spare Argentinian polo player lying around and no longer have a use for him, please send him my way 🙂
Maryanne Pope is the author of A Widow’s Awakening, the playwright of Saviour and the screenwriter of God’s Country. Maryanne is the CEO of Pink Gazelle Productions and the Chair of the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund. If you would like to receive her weekly blog, please sign up here.
For further information about the Face the Future Christmas blog series, here is the link.