We LOVE the holidays! But holiday trash? Not so much.
Before you run out and buy a bunch of glittery wrapping paper and plastic curling ribbon, consider these jaw-dropping facts from Stanford University.
Americans throw away 25% more trash from Thanksgiving to New Year's than any other time of year. That's an extra 25 million tons of garbage, or about 1 million extra tons per week!
If every family reused just two feet of holiday ribbon, it would save 38,000 miles of ribbon-- enough to tie a bow around our entire planet!
And if every family in the U.S. wrapped just three presents in re-used materials, it would save enough paper to cover 45,000 football fields.
Each year Americans buy 2.65 billion Christmas cards-- enough to fill a football field 10 stories high.
So basically, when it comes to the holidays, Americans are a lot like Sunny the Sideloader. We get so excited, we rush around and make a giant mess!
Here are some tips to help you reduce your waste this holiday season:
1. When you're shopping, skip the plastic bags. Bring reusable bags from home.
2. Give eco-friendly gifts like experiences, baked goods, things that will get used up like candles and soap, and durable items that will last a long time.
3. Reuse ribbon, or choose a more sustainable option like twine.
4. Use paper tape or skip the tape altogether (twine can hold the paper in place!)
5. Reuse old wrapping paper.
6. If you do buy wrapping paper, make sure it can be recycled. Sadly, a lot of wrapping paper, like glittery or foil-stamped paper, is not recyclable.
7. Try furoshiki, a beautiful, zero-waste Japanese gift wrap technique. Check out the video below!