Eco friendly Christmas gifts
Looking after your bills and your energy consumption isn’t the only way to save this Christmas. Gifts, cards, wrapping paper, crackers, decorations… it all adds up! But there are sustainable options out there for virtually everything, and you can easily find stocking fillers and festive favourites that don’t cost the earth.
Quality, not quantity
A good start when it comes to sustainable gifting is to think quality, not quantity. The WWF estimates that just under half of UK adults get gifts every year that they don’t want and may never use. Focus on quality and hopefully your gifts won’t up in the bin!
Whatever you’re gifting this year, an easy way to cut your carbon footprint is to shop local. In 2020 the UK's Black Friday deliveries produced a whopping 429,000 tonnes of carbon (that’s the same as 435 flights between London and New York). Shopping online might be convenient, but it comes at a cost.
Give the gift of a good time
You could even skip the shops altogether and give the gift of a good time. Experiences, days out, classes and workshops are a great alternative to giving a ‘thing’ this year. A cooking display, jewellery making course or even just a promise to spend time doing something fun can make for a wonderful, personalised present.
Why not do-it-yourself this Christmas? Homemade gifts are so meaningful, and a great way to avoid single-use plastics and emissions from manufacturing and shipping. If you know someone with a sweet tooth why not bake them something? You could fire-up the knitting needles to make a cosy winter scarf or hat, or check out one of the many tutorials on the internet for making candles or bath bombs.
You can even share the love with pre-loved gifts. When you think second-hand you might think dodgy Christmas jumpers or old DVDs, but the rise of the circular economy means more and more quality items are finding themselves in shops like Oxfam, Shelter and Preloved. Clothes, books, furniture and games can all be found for a fraction of the price, and the carbon.