1. Light with LEDs
LED Christmas lights use 90% less electricity and last more than 100 times longer than conventional strands.
Charlie’s Hardware in Swarthmore carries “warm” white LED strands for a great price. Also, check out ChristmasLightsEtc.com.
2. Know your Turkey
Most food items travel 1,500 miles before they reach our table. Local food tastes better because it’s not engineered to travel. And most local turkey farms raise free-range, hormone-free birds.
The Swarthmore Coop will offer locally grown produce and locally raised meats all winter. Share your food story with your holiday guests.
3. Throw Waste-Free Holiday Parties
Americans create 25% more waste during the holidays or an additional one million tons of waste per week.
If you throw a holiday party, try to make it waste-free. Borrow from neighbors. Buy inexpensive plates and cloth napkins to use year after year. Send food home with guests.
4. Give Meaningful Gifts
In a national survey, 70% of Americans said they would prefer less focus on purchased gifts.
Consider giving a gift of your time. Write a letter. Prepare a favorite dish. Share a local event together.
5. Donate Last Year’s Gifts for Reuse
More than $5 billion worth of Christmas gifts go unused each year – they are usually those items purchased at the last minute.
Chester Eastside Ministries and CityTeam Ministries are two local charities that accept donations of gently used clothing and toys and distribute them to Chester families at Christmas.
6. Turn It Off
Standby power accounts for roughly 10% of US residential electricity use, or $130 per household per year.
Use a smart power strip to make it easy to turn off devices, available at Target and Home Depot for less than $20.
7. Use Recycled Paper
Half of all the paper consumed in the US is used to wrap and decorate consumer products. And Americans send 2.3 billion holiday cards each year, enough to fill football field 10 stories high.
Check out NashvilleWraps.com for great holiday gift bags made from recycled paper. All TinyPrints.com holiday cards are printed on recycled paper. And buy paper towels, tissues, toilet tissue and printer paper made from recycled content all year long.