In an average year, Canadians will through out 540,000 tonnes of gift wrapping over the Christmas season! Putting that into perspective, it’s the equivalent of placing 100,000 elephant’s worth of paper in the trash. So, forget anyone who looks down on you for carefully unpacking your gifts because you want to reuse the wrapping paper. Its not just eco conscious, its eco smart.
Here are 20 innovative ways for reusing wrapping paper:
There are some people, however, who just cannot resist tearing into that gift wrapping to discover what’s beneath, and I don’t blame you – sometimes the temptation is just too much to bare! If you’re one of those wrapping rippers, then the answer is ‘wrap wise’. Use reusable and eco-friendly materials to cut down on your own packaging waste. For instance, newspaper, old maps, calendars and gift bags all work as wrapping material. Personally, as long as it rips, it’s good enough for me. If that doesn’t float your boat, then try your hand at ‘Furokshiki’ - a traditional Japanese wrapping method that uses old fabrics and cloths. It’s not only great for the environment, its looks awesome too!
Give old electronics a new life
In the increasingly technological world we live in, lots of people will be receiving snazzy new gadgets this Christmas. But just because your old phone or laptop is out of fashion, that doesn’t mean it’s out of use. Make sure your old unwanted devices don’t sit around in cupboards for years - get down to your local thrift shop and donate! All dead electronic appliances can also be dropped off at various recycling depots set up by the Calls2Recycle program. Find your nearest drop off location here:
It is believed the program helps reduce electronic waste in landfills by 140,000 items every year so don’t forget to make your contribution.
Re-use, re-use, re-use
Our last, but most valuable tip for a ‘waste free’ Christmas is re-use, re-use, re-use. We’ve already touched on recycling wrapping paper, but there’s so many more items that can and should be used next year and for many Christmas’s to come. Tinsel, wreaths and stockings, for example, and that’s not even mentioning lights. If you haven’t already, switch to LED Christmas lights - they last 7 times as long and use one tenth of the energy. Whilst you’re in with the new, make you’re out with the old properly– visit www.lightrecyle.ca to divert old lighting products from reaching the landfill.
One thing that won’t last until 2020 is your Christmas Turkey but if you’re not eating Turkey sandwiches in 2019, then something has gone horribly wrong. Look online for a hundred and one recipes for Christmas leftovers.
We hope you have a wonderful and ‘waste-free’ Christmas!