Christmas time is here, and we immediately start planning our festivities, what food we will eat, and how we will enjoy celebrating with family and friends! This is the time of year for travelling to see friends and family, for decorating our houses, exchanging gifts, and sending cards, and for those of us who love cooking, preparing Christmas recipes for parties we may be planning.
We are bombarded with advertising to buy more and more, and this time of year means that our amount of waste increases. If you are wondering how to reduce your waste over this period, we have some hints for you on how you can achieve that.
How Much Waste is Created Over the Festive Season?
Christmas may be a wonderful time of year, but unfortunately it is also one of the most wasteful with a huge rise in the volume of materials being produced (think packaging, wrapping paper, plastic and glass decorations, extra food, etc.) that ultimately has to be disposed of. Unfortunately much of it will find its way into our landfills to the detriment of our environment.
- In the UK we create 30% more waste than normal during the festive season.
- 1 billion Christmas cards are put in the bin each year.
- 6 million Christmas trees are bought and then have to be disposed of.
- The average household will use four rolls of wrapping paper, most of which will land up in rubbish bins after the gifts have been ripped open.
Food in particular is wasted in huge amounts during Christmas and some of the numbers are astronomical. It is estimated that in the UK, 270,000 tons of food are wasted during this time. One of the reasons is that we tend to prepare more food than we need as we do not want to run out. In reality, this translates into the average family preparing enough food for an extra 3 guests at their Christmas table.
- 10 million turkeys find their way onto our dinner tables but 91 million slices are not eaten.
- This means up to 2 million turkeys are disposed of while still edible. Add to this 5 million Christmas puddings, and 74 million mince pies and this equates to tons of food.
- We throw out 130 million Brussels sprouts.
How to Reduce Household Waste over the Festive Season
The extra waste we generate at this time of the year often means that our recycling practices are not followed as strictly as we normally do, with much of our junk finding its way into our landfills. Unfortunately, this results in more greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere, adding to the impact of global warming. It is therefore imperative for each household to do what they can to lessen their impact on the environment by becoming less wasteful and more sustainable.
Clever Choice of Gifts
Much of the joy of Christmas is giving and receiving gifts, but now is the time to consider the type of gifts we are giving. We all have received those gifts that we may use once or twice and never use again which end up being thrown out. We need to think of gifts that people will use.
- Everyone appreciates chocolates, homemade biscuits, or a bottle of wine or spirits.
- For the person who has everything, make a donation to their favourite charity in their name. This way everyone wins.
- Think of giving someone a great experience by gifting them with theatre tickets, a spa treatment, or a course that would further their hobby or interest, for example, a photography course or a cookery course.
- A voucher from a local restaurant or shop works two ways by also ensuring that local businesses stay afloat during this difficult economic time and makes a great gift.
- A beautiful house plant will make any homeowner happy.
- An online gift voucher, or a voucher from a favourite store.
Green Ways of Wrapping Gifts
Use your imagination when wrapping your gifts by using recycled or reusable materials.
- Use a reusable shopping bag, a scarf, or a tea towel and make the wrapping part of the gift.
- Reuse gift wrap, and gift bags from last Christmas, and reuse your old Christmas cards as gift tags.
- Make sure your wrapping paper is recycled or recyclable. If it can be scrunched into a ball and hold its shape, then it is recyclable. Avoid paper that is shiny or metallic.
- Let your children decorate plain brown paper or paper bags that you can use as unique gift wrap.
Decorate for a Green Christmas
- Use a natural, locally farmed Christmas tree if possible. Please make sure it is chipped after Christmas and used for compost instead of being dumped in a landfill.
- Make your own decorations using plants, branches, and berries from your garden or neighbourhood.
Entertaining Guests without the Garbage
- Avoid using disposable cups, plates, or cutlery at your social gatherings. If you do not have enough, ask people to bring their own. Use reusable tablecloths and napkins.
- Encourage guests to take away any leftover food, snacks, or treats to cut back on your waste.
- Have a container for guests to dispose of their food scraps and add these to your compost bin.
- Put bins out for the easy recycling of bottles, plastic, and paper. If guests recycle their own, this will cut down on your cleaning up time after the last guest leaves.
Dealing with Christmas Waste
- If your tree is natural, make sure it is taken away for chipping to be used as mulch or compost. If you use a false tree, pack it away carefully so you can reuse it next year.
- Keep your Christmas packaging and boxes ready for reuse for next Christmas.
- Sort out your household waste carefully for recycling and remember Junk Removal Wirral can help you with the safe and responsible disposal of all your Christmas waste.
Why Use Junk Removal Wirral?
Junk Removal Wirral is there to help you achieve your Christmas waste goals. We know it is a time when households generate more waste than usual. Don’t let your waste build up to unmanageable levels during the Festive season. We can collect your waste after hours, at weekends, and even offer a same day junk removal service. We offer residential junk removal and yard waste removal in Wirral, and surrounds. We’re a licensed waste removal company, and will dispose of your unwanted garbage in a responsible manner, recycling where we can.
We operate in the Wirral, Chester, Liverpool, Ellesmere Port area and we look forward to hearing from you.
Please contact us at email@example.com
Wirral & Liverpool 01518 080407
Chester: 01244 953100