All I Want for Christmas is Sustainability

11.30.2011 · Posted in Uncategorized

According to the National Retail Foundation, the average American spent $515.94 on gifts for the 2011 holiday season. Did you know that there are many sustainable shopping techniques that can help to reduce costs and negative environmental impacts? As the holiday shopping buzz approaches, here are some eco-friendly Christmas shopping tips to keep in mind:

Services and Experiences versus Goods– Gifts of service and experience can bring fun and lasting memories to the recipient and require little to no use of natural resources. Some examples include tickets to a play/musical, tickets to a sporting event, gift certificates for spas and massages, memberships to local organizations, and even homemade coupons for chores such as lawn care and dog walking.

 Consider buying antiques and collectibles– Value and appeal doesn’t always mean “new and shiny.” Antiques and collectibles are affordable and can have the appeal of history and sentimental value.

Giving found objects and homemade items– Found objects such as seashells can be used to tell a story and can offer the gift of rediscovery to recipient. Homemade gifts can allow you to express your creativity and are a very heartfelt and thoughtful present. If the homemade gift is an edible item, than it will be personal, easy on the environment, and not likely to go to waste.

“Old jewelry and “used” gifts– Passing on “old” jewelry can allow you to give a timeless item without the cost to the environment. Previously used gold looks just as good as new gold, and jewelers can even redesign and resize certain pieces. Many used gifts can be appropriate and environmentally friendly. Consider items such as vintage clothing, CDs and books, toys, and electronics. If you are uneasy about giving a used gift you could write a note on the gift card that says “We know how much you love nature…this gift comes to you at no expense to the environment.”

For more tips, check out the following website

 http://eartheasy.com/give_sustainchristmas.htm

Have a green Christmas!

-Andrea Maroun

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