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Reduce waste during the holidays

(Dec 20, 2012)

The holiday season is traditionally a time for giving, but along with gifts, comes waste. Christmas trees, wrapping paper and packaging materials overwhelm trash collection services. 

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Americans throw away 25 percent more trash between Thanksgiving and the New Year than during any other time of the year. This extra waste amounts to 25 million tons of trash, or about 1 million extra tons per week.

Here are a few ideas on how to keep the holidays green:

  • Buy gifts that look beautiful with no packaging.
  • Cut back on ribbon usage.
  • Wrap your presents in creative materials.
  • Send electronic greeting cards.
  • Give experiences rather than “things.”
  • Give gifts with an environmental message.
  • Give donations or memberships to local nonprofit organizations.
  • When entertaining, choose reusable glasses, dishware, silverware and cloth napkins.
  • Recycle your Christmas tree, non-foil wrapping paper and Styrofoam. 

Get more tips on being green during the holidays.

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