Dreaming of green Christmas?

If you are tired of waste and materialism at Christmas time, then read on to discover how to have a green Christmas.

Australians love to show affection through Christmas gift giving, however, many of these gifts are unwanted and end up in landfill.

So, this year, think of the “three Hs” of gift-giving – homemade, helpful or a hand-me-down – and give gifts filled with love and care.

Create a one-off, handmade gift for your loved ones. Try to use recycled or salvaged materials.

Or do something helpful in the world and donate to your loved one’s favourite cause.

And don’t forget to scour your local op-shops for hand-me-down treasures – they’re a great source of toys, sports gear, books, ornaments, antique crockery, good-as-new clothing, and jewellery.

Bid farewell to food packaging this Christmas by looking for ways to purchase your ingredients in your own reusable packaging.

Take lightweight netting vegie bags to the farmer’s market or grocery shop for your fresh produce, ask deli staff to put your cheese or cured meats in your own reusable plastic or glass containers, and don’t forget your cloth bags to load everything at the checkout.

And reduce the environmental impact of the food you’re serving by buying local and seasonal – the less processing, transport, and refrigeration your food needs, the better it is for you and the planet – and your support is a great gift for local farmers.

Did you know every Christmas Australians use about 150,000km of wrapping paper?

That’s enough to wrap the Earth’s equator almost four times.

Most of this pretty paper ends its single-use life in landfill.

This year, explore the alternatives you already have on hand for bundling up your gifts – your children’s drawings, old maps, paper bags, fabric squares, pieces of string or ribbon instead of sticky tape.

And don’t forget to collect and reuse any wrapping paper you might receive with your gifts – it will be perfect for next year.

Get real when it comes to your Christmas decorations this year and go with biodegradable objects of beauty, things that come from nature and will easily break down.

Slice an orange, dehydrate the pieces and hang them from twine; look around your backyard for gumnuts, seed pods or even feathers that you can turn into cute baubles; make some popcorn and string it into lengths to wrap around your Chrissy tree.

It’s the day after Christmas and fridges right across the country are groaning under the weight of leftovers – pudding and prawns, coleslaw, and cured meats.

So much of this food goes to waste at Christmas time. In fact, nine in 10 Australians will throw out 25 per cent of the food they’ve bought during the Christmas period.

These are morsels too good to waste, though. Get inventive and turn them into creative Boxing Day meals.

Find out how you can fight food waste this Christmas by visiting here.

Five top tips:

  • Create one-off, handmade gifts for your loved ones.
  • Bid farewell to food packaging and purchase your ingredients in your own reusable packaging.
  • Explore alternatives you already have on hand for bundling up your gifts – your children’s drawings, old maps, paper bags, fabric squares, pieces of string or ribbon instead of sticky tape.
  • Collect and reuse any wrapping paper you might receive with your gifts.
  • Make your own Christmas decorations from biodegradable objects of beauty – gumnuts, popcorn or pine cones.

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