It’s that time again: the ‘most wonderful time of the year’ when the nation eats chocolate for breakfast, falls asleep on armchairs in the middle of the day and largely tries to avoid the sprouts. Yep, it’s Christmas. Inevitably at this time of year, we all end up with more waste than normal, largely down to increased food consumption and all that wrapping paper – not to mention all the of trees that get chucked out come January.
There’s no need to place so much extra strain on our waste management facilities, though. A little planning on your part means that Christmas can be fun, stress-free and tidy. Here are some top tips on how to manage your excess waste.
Most of us give presents at Christmas, and we also receive cards. These are lovely, but they use a huge amount of paper. Make use of your paper recycling bins instead of putting the rubbish in the normal bin. If the recycling bin overflows, you can start a separate pile to be put out at the same time the rest of it is collected.
Of course, this only applies if you have a real Christmas tree, but don’t just leave it out for the bin men when it comes to taking down your decorations. If you can, make use of your redundant tree by chopping it down and using it in your garden. You can get some great compost bins which will not only take care of your waste problem but will, in the long run, vastly benefit both your garden and the wider environment. These days, it’s important to consider the sustainability of your waste production so it makes sense to reuse things where you can.
The same goes for all the leftover food that gets chucked away. We throw away a huge amount of food all year round, but this problem is worse at Christmas, so compost everything you can to reduce the amount you throw in the bin. Also, make sure you recycle as much of the packaging that comes with the food as possible.
Naturally, Christmas is a time for having fun and not worrying as much as you normally do, so you don’t have to be perfect. It’s nice to think, though, that you can be sustainable and conscientious about your waste at the same time as indulging in all the excesses of the season.