How you can be Environmentally Responsible this Holiday Season
Over the next month, you will find that you use a lot of paper products. The holidays require wrapping paper, gift boxes, delivery supplies, and even retail boxes. If you are not careful, you could end up spending a significant portion of your holiday budget on paper and shipment supplies. These tips, however, will help you reduce your budget, while also being more environmentally responsible.
Use delivery boxes as gift boxes
A large percentage of shopping today has shifted over to internet shopping. People now have the ability to complete most, if not all, of their holiday shopping from home. As gifts begin to show up on your doorstep, make sure you hold onto those boxes. These boxes are perfect for shipping gifts to your out of state family and friends. Many retailers are moving toward environmentally friendly packaging, including reusable clamshells. Reusable clamshell packaging solutions are often used for smaller products. But, when it is not, it can be easily repurposed into a gift box.
Avoid using plastics
Plastics are one of the most commonly used products today, both in shipping and packaging. Yet, they are the most difficult to recycle. Of the 78 million metric tons of plastic packaging produced worldwide in 2013, 40% was dumped in landfills and 32% was leaked into the environment, polluting both land and sea. Reusable packaging, like reusable clamshells, can help to reduce this kind of waste. You can also help by avoiding plastic shipping materials. You can use alternative products to achieve the same insulating and packaging purposes of plastics.
Recycle all paper products
Many households go through rolls and rolls of wrapping and shipping paper. Instead of throwing these items out simply because it is easier to do so, make an effort to recycle all paper products. The majority of packaging products today are recyclable. The problem generally lies in the fact that people do not make enough of an effort to recycle items like paper and plastics. Recycle every paper product that you use over the season, including box labels and kid?s toy boxes.
Purchase from companies that value recycling
In addition to increasing your recycling efforts, you can also help by only purchasing items from those companies that are environmentally aware. The 2016 West Rock Consumer Insights Study revealed that 45% of consumers have purchased a product because the packaging was environmentally friendly. Customers care about things like green packaging and reusable clamshell packaging products. By supporting these green companies, you are also helping to reduce the effect of plastics and papers on the planet.
Why recycling now is so important
Green activists have been talking about the importance of recycling for years. Why is it so important that we begin taking active steps now? Despite many green friendly movements, a large number of products are still making it to landfills. An estimated 150 million metric tons of plastic currently resides in the world?s oceans. A 2016 Ellen MacArthur Foundation report stated that if we do not take action, by the year 2050, there may be more plastic than fish in the ocean. By this point, it would be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to reverse the negative effects of this pollution.
With the holiday season quickly approaching, it is time to evaluate and understand what you can do to reduce plastic and paper pollution. Reuse products instead of purchasing new. Only purchase items from businesses that are environmentally responsible. The actions that you take now are continually affecting the planet and what we can expect in years to come.