If possible in your area, opt for local produce too. The shorter transport distance from field to fork, the lower the carbon emissions. Many farmers’ markets and independent shops are great for finding organic food and drink made in the surrounding area. Just look for the EU little green organic leaf to find food you can trust.
Organic food and drink can be more expensive, because it often costs more to produce. However, there are many ways you can eat better for less, check out our shopping tips to make organic more affordable.
It’s time to lighten up
Buying Christmas candles? Paraffin (a by-product of gas and oil refineries) candles are made from petroleum residue, so make sure you go for ones made from beeswax or natural vegetable-based wax – which are much better for your health and the environment.
Take inspiration for your decorations from the great outdoors and ditch the plastic. Collect pine cones, twigs, berries, sprigs of evergreen plants and oranges to create wreaths, centrepieces and simple ornaments. You could even upcycle old books into paper chains or bunting. Your house will feel festive in no time and even better, it won’t cost you a penny!
Turn it off
Christmas tree lights left on for 10 hours a day over the 12 days of Christmas produce enough CO2 to inflate 12 balloons, so turn them off when they’re not needed. Better still, use a timer so you don't have to remember.
All wrapped up
In the UK we collectively throw away 226,800 miles of wrapping paper, which is enough to stretch nine times around the world! Swap foil wrapping paper for newspaper, old magazines or plain brown paper which can be easily recycled. Even better, go Japanese and learn the art of cloth wrapping (or, furoshiki) using material that can be used again and again. You may end up being the butt of some Scrooge-based jokes among your family, but wear it with pride - safe in the knowledge that you’re doing your bit to reduce waste (and save a few more pennies).
Keep it down!
Simple but effective, turning down the thermostat by one degree will make a huge difference. What with a house full of people and the oven on full tilt, your house will be warmer than usual. Plus, you'll not only save carbon and money but it's a good excuse to don your most outrageous Christmas jumper.