5 ways to have an eco-friendly Christmas
While it may be the most wonderful time of the year, celebrating Christmas has a huge impact on the planet. With greeting cards, plastic decorations and unwanted gifts all generating a huge amount of landfill waste, the real cost of a Merry Christmas can be devastating for the environment. But with just a few smart choices and some easy substitutions, you can help save the planet and still celebrate in style. Read on to learn how you can have your most eco-friendly Christmas ever.
Update your Christmas lights
If you still haven’t invested in modern LED fairy lights for your tree, then make this the year you finally get around to it. Not only are LED bulbs much brighter than traditional incandescent varieties, but they also use far less energy, meaning they’re better for your budget as well as the environment. In fact, if every household in the UK swapped just one string of traditional incandescent lights for an LED equivalent over the 12 days of Christmas, this would save 57,000 tonnes of CO2, according to a report in This is Money.
If you’re looking to cut down your energy usage even more this year, you could consider also consider using a plug-in timer to control when your lights switch on and off. This way, your lights will only come on for a set amount of time each day, and there’s no need to worry about forgetting to turn them off.
Get an eco-friendly real tree
While artificial trees may last longer than living varieties, there’s currently no way for them to recycled in an environmentally friendly way. This means that, even if you re-use your tree for a number of years, it will still eventually end up in a landfill.
One acre of growing trees can produce enough oxygen every day for 16 people, according to this guide to selecting your tree from Wyevale Garden Centres, so you’ll be supporting an eco-friendly industry when you buy an authentic spruce. Unlike plastic artificial versions, a real tree can also be easily recycled in an eco-friendly way: either chip it and compost it, or take it to your local Christmas tree recycling centre. Some councils even offer a free collection service in the New Year.