The most wasteful time of the year

It should be no surprise to anyone that more waste is generated during the holidays than at any other time of the year.  According to the Environmental Protection Agency, an additional one million tons of waste is generated in the U.S. from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day.  That’s an increase of 25% from the rest of the year — from 4 million tons to five million.  Even worse, approximately 50% of the gifts purchased for Christmas will end up in a landfill within the next 12 months.

What can YOU do to minimize your contribution to this environmental disaster?

Here are a few ideas for cutting back your trash output now and into the new year:

  • Your first step should be to REFUSE before you reduce, reuse, and recycle.
  • Bring your own bags when you go shopping.
  • Don’t buy bottled water if you get thirsty when you’re out — bring your own reusable bottle and cut back on the number of plastic bottles that end up in landfills.
  • Be savvy about recycling throughout the holidays.  Don’t just throw things away because it’s easier; try to save ribbons, tissue paper, and other wrappings for reuse and, if you can’t, recycle what you can.

These are just a few idea; check out this list at the E.P.A.’s website.

Tell the Eco Women:  What are you doing to cut back on your waste this year?

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2 thoughts on “The most wasteful time of the year

  1. I’m trying really hard not to buy those last-minute “I don’t think they have enough so I’ll just get this one more thing” gifts for my family. I find on-line shopping helps with those urges and makes it easier for me to stick to my list. The piles might be a little smaller this year, but I’m sure it’s stuff they’ll like and use. So what if unwrapping goes more quickly? That just means we can eat French Toast Casserole even sooner!

  2. Having less waste feels great and it’s less work, too. I usually end up sorting the tags and wrappings after the unwrapping frenzy because the family hasn’t quite bought into my green tendencies. I’ll get them eventually.

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