Probably the easiest way to be green this holiday season is to reuse items from previous years. As you dig through your decorations, assess which items need to be replaced and which ones are still usable. Then, make a list of the things you need and look for them at secondhand stores. At this time of year, the aisles of thrift shops are filled with gently-used holiday decorations. You’ll find all of the things you need to trim your tree at a fraction of the price and help keep boxes of ornaments from going to the landfill.
After going through your supplies maybe you have discovered that you need to purchase new lights. There are two choices in holiday lighting: incandescent or LED. LED lights are 90% more efficient and can last up to 10,000 hours compared with the 5,000 hours for incandescent bulbs., however, they are more expensive per strand than incandescent. For optimal energy consumption consider putting your lights on a timer. This way you won’t wake up realizing you forgot the turn the lights off overnight. You can also increase your energy savings with solar powered holiday lights which can be found at local hardware stores.
A final tip in getting your green holiday season started is to rethink your holiday cards – send them electronically! There are almost 2.65 billion Christmas cards are sold in the U.S. every year. Sending electronic holiday cards is a simple way to reduce the amount of holiday waste. Some websites offer a selection of holiday e-cards that can be personalized and sent to family and friends. If you prefer to send cards through the mail, look for holiday cards printed on recycled paper with soy-based ink.