Christmas Unwrapped

Going Green at Christmas

Celebrate the festive season by cutting consumption, recycling, and sourcing locally, ethically and organically. 

Whatever our religious beliefs, the period around the Christmas holidays is a time of celebration, with plenty of eating, drinking and the giving of gifts. We send 1.7 billion Christmas cards each year. That’s the equivalent of 200,000 trees. We use a further 50,000 trees-worth of wrapping paper. Altogether, it mounts up to create around 3 million tonnes of rubbish over the festive season alone.


This year try to think about the wider impact of your Christmas consumption and take steps to make your Christmas greener and more ethical. This does not mean giving up on celebrating altogether. It just means taking more care about what you buy, where it’s going and what is going to happen to it after it’s finished with.

Trees, Decorations and Cards.

Six million Christmas trees are bought each year in the UK and most are thrown out afterwards. Instead of adding to the waste, think about whether you truly need a tree in your house. If you really do want one, buy a tree that has come from a sustainable source, and make sure you recycle it afterwards via your local authority. Or buy a synthetic one that will last you a life time (one you can bring out year after year). Some Christmas decorations are made in sweat-shops, so try and be creative and make your own instead. Eliminate card waste altogether and instead send an electronic card (for those who have computers) instead or look for cards made from recycled material.


Most of the rubbish you produce around Christmas can be recycled one way or another. In the UK we discard enough wrapping paper to cover an area larger than Guernsey. Dont add to the mountains of waste: re-use or recycle. Around one billion cards will be thrown away after Christmas. Recycle yours through the Woodland Trust scheme at W H Smith or Tesco. Put your vegetable waste into the compost, and instead of hanging onto unwanted gifts, give them to charity.

The Tips Bank


Tips and Advice on Candlewax Removal

Dripping Candle Wax: The best way to get rid of candle wax stains is not to get them there in the first place, there are a few simple ways to avoid them 

Candlewax Comment I thought 'placing a paper bag on the floor and ironing it??!! U must be insane' I couldn't put my mind around how it would work, but the candle wax is gone!! - It actually works don't be afraid to do it!! -- tinuodunsi

1. Buy better candles, cheap candles have lots of additives in them that cause them to stain worse, try a candle that is nothing but paraffin wax, scent, color, and stearic acid (the acid helps the candle wax burn away so there is little to no dripping.)  
 even dripless candles drip if there is a draft near where they are burning, make sure they are not near any open windows, fans, or heater vents.  
3. make sure that the candle holder is big enough to hold any spillovers.  
 never blow out your candles, use a snuffer, if you don't have one a shot glass or juice glass over the wick until the flame is out works great. and  
5. if you have just put a candle out don't move it until the wax has solidified again. -- niki nance

Red Wax Stain in carpet: I have the answer and it takes less than 5 minutes. No hot irons required. If you have a small shampooer, boil water in a kettle and pour it directly on the wax. Suck it up immediately. I did this on a white wool rug and was amazed to see the wax and the colour disappear totally. L. Lowe Cambridge, Ontario Canada -- More on Candlewax stains

Underground Cooling
A Trillion Trees Feel the Heat Cool the Tube Quiz 

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