environmentaly friendly gifts

Facts on Holiday Waste

  • From Thanksgiving to New Year's Day, household waste increases by more than 25%. Added food waste, shopping bags, packaging, wrapping paper, bows and ribbons all add up to an additional 1 million tons a week to our landfills (Source: EPA).

  • In the U.S., annual trash from gift-wrap and shopping bags totals 4 million tons (Source: Use Less Stuff).

Cards

  • An estimated 2.6 billion holiday cards are sold each year in the United States, enough to fill a football field 10 stories high. Electronic holiday greeting cards, offered through a variety of websites, are a convenient, no-cost, waste-free alternative (Source: CalRecycle).

  • If we each sent one less card, we'd save 50,000 cubic yards of paper (Source: Use Less Stuff). Here are ideas to recycle, buy recycled and reuse cards.

Ribbons

  • If every family reused just two feet of holiday ribbon, the 38,000 miles of ribbon saved could tie a bow around the entire planet (Source: CalRecycle).

Food

  • At least 28 billion pounds of edible food are wasted each year - equating to over 100 pounds per person (Source: Use Less Stuff).

Paper

  • Half of the paper America consumes is used to wrap and decorate consumer products (Source: The Recycler's Handbook, 1990).

Holiday Trees

  • Approximately 33 million live Christmas trees are sold in North America every year (Source: EPA).

  • To help prevent waste from cutting down and disposing of live trees, you can buy a potted tree and plant it after the holidays.

Gifts

  • The average American spends $800 on gifts over the holiday season (Source: American Research Group).

  • According to a national survey, 70% of Americans would welcome less emphasis on gift giving and spending (Source: Center for a New American Dream).

  • About 40% of all battery sales occur during the holiday season. Buy rechargeable batteries to accompany your electronic gifts, and consider giving a battery charger as well. Rechargeable batteries reduce the amount of potentially harmful materials thrown away, and can save money in the long run (Source: EPA).

Transportation

  • If each family reduced holiday gasoline consumption by one gallon (about twenty miles), we'd reduce greenhouse gas emissions by one million tons (Source: Use Less Stuff).