Lifestyle

Energy-wise LEDs make season bright

When it comes to colors, red and green are synonymous with the holiday season. The green of Christmas trees and the red of Santa Claus become more and more prevalent once the holiday season begins.

But this holiday season more and more people are involving green in their holiday season in an entirely different way than the norm. That’s because more people are going green this holiday season, choosing to make their holiday as eco-friendly as possible. Those looking to make their holiday greener than ever should consider the following tips.

• Embrace the e-vite. Holiday parties are a big part of the season. Be it the office holiday party, a gathering with friends or the traditional family gathering during the holidays, social calenders are especially busy this time of year. Unfortunately, many people still mail paper invitations to such gatherings. Those hosting a holiday party this year can positively impact the environment by choosing e-vites, which aren’t put to paper and, instead of traditional invitations, e-mailed out to friends and family. In addition to their environmental benefit, e-vites also make it easier for guests to RSVP, as it’s just a mouse click away instead of mailing the RSVP back to the host.

• Make e-cards. E-cards are similar to e-vites in that they help reduce the reliance on paper but still convey the same message to family and friends. E-cards can also help families save money (some Web sites even provide free e-cards) and allow them to personalize cards depending on the recipient.

• Use energy efficient lighting when decorating. Though one of the most eco-friendly ideas around the holidays is to forgo holiday lighting entirely, many families find this tradition too much fun and too enjoyable to abandon completely. That said, for families who want to positively impact the environment while still enjoying holiday lighting this season, energy-efficient LED lighting can save substantial amounts of energy while also helping save some money as well. LED lights can be used both indoors and outdoors and are just as bright and aesthetically appealing as traditional lighting.

• Shop locally. Shopping locally when looking for holiday gifts is not only a good way to boost the local economy, but it also helps reduce packaging and transportation, which can prove taxing on the environment.

• Wrap gifts in old newspapers. Many communities mandate that citizens recycle old newspapers and magazines. But before shipping off newspapers to the nearby recycling center, use those old newspapers to wrap the family gifts. This can help save money on wrapping paper and the newspaper will still be able to be recycled, even after it’s already served dual purposes.

• Get crafty. Ornaments to hang on the tree or around the house are a tradition many families enjoy each holiday season. But even Mom would tell you the most valuable ornaments are the ones her children made. Families can still make their own ornaments even if the kids are all grown. Make ornaments out of recycled materials. Making ornaments from such materials helps save on packaging and make the most out of those old materials around the house.

• Replant the holiday tree. The debate of artificial versus living tree will live on forever. While there’s an argument to be made for both living and artificial Christmas trees, including how each can be eco-friendly, families fond of living trees can help the environment by simply re-planting the tree once the holidays are over. Plant in a pot and place outside the house to ensure everyone still gets their living tree, but that tree can live on to see another day once the holiday season has passed.

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Read the latest Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Aug 27 edition online now. Browse the archives.