Forget the 12 Days of Christmas (for one, it’s an outrageously impractical amount of birds to gift anybody) – instead, our Sustainability team have put together 12 tip tips for pulling off a Yule you’ll be proud of. ..
1. EAT SEASONAL
Innovate in the kitchen with more vegetables that are growing out of the ground right now. ES This will help avoid overseas shipping, as global food miles generate nearly 20% of all CO2 emissions from food. ‘Tis the season for mushroom wellingtons, fa la la la la, la la la la…
2. EAT PLANT BASED
“Plant-Rich Diets” are two top actions for combating climate change. PDD Animal agriculture is unequivocally a major driver for many-a-bad-thing for the planet. So aim for more / all plant-based delicacies instead of meat and dairy.
3. EAT EVERYTHING!
“Reducing Food Waste” is also top for individual actions that can stop climate change. PDD Shockingly, 75% of post-farm waste happens in the home due to overabundance – so get on that bubble and squeak with the leftovers! Make sure it’s all gobbled up to avoid wasted energy from harmful greenhouse gasses produced by food rotting unnecessarily.
4. PAUSE ON PLASTICS
It’s everywhere. It’s hard to escape it. Shop smart, by avoiding gifts in unnecessary plastic packaging. Gift sets of shower gels and body care items are key offenders here – natural soap sets wrapped in paper are heaps nicer anyway and are a sure-fire way to avoid contributing to polluting the oceans with more plastic than fish (by weight) by 2050. EMF
5. SHOP SECOND HAND
Humans now produce an estimated 4.88 billion home-appliances, and 80 billion garments of clothing each year. Give experiences and gifts of hope through donations, or support local charities by buying from charity shops in the local area.
6. TAKE SLOW TRANSPORT
‘Driving home for Christmas’ is an absolute tune – but it’s also not the one. Private car ownership has spiraled from 4 million vehicles on the road in 1950 to over 41million now. Who wants to be top to toe in tail backs with red lights all around, when you could plan ahead to avoid joining the congestion, on public transport – or at least car share and make sure each seat has a bum on.
7. PLAY MORE, GIFT LESS
Children in the UK see on average 10,000 advertisements a year – from junk food to plastic tat. Tempering children’s expectations through story and play and highlighting the importance of gratitude could help to moderate expectations. The cardboard box is usually their favourite bit anyway…
8. THINK CAREFULLY ABOUT THE TREE
The UK is officially one of the world’s most nature-depleted countries, and yet 8 billion trees are grown and felled each year – contributing to poor ecosystems for biodiversity and regeneration. Get creative and adorn your home with different forms of decoration this year, or check out local tree-hire schemes in your area.
9. UPCYCLE ALL
From wrapping presents to writing cards – can you get creative and upcycle gifts, cards, wrapping paper and decorations for family and friends? (Top tip – old wrapping paper with ‘Happy Birthday’ on it can be fully Christmas relevant if you just write ‘JESUS’ on the end) – and you will save money, too!
10. HONE IN AT HOME
Small changes at home can help. Climate change thinktanks recommend turning thermostats to 19°C (and water to 55°C) – making a 1°C reduction could save 7% of your energy bill. Check your lightbulbs are LED b – they use 80% less energy and last longer!
11. SHARE YOUR SURPLUS
Use amazing apps like Olio or your local Freecycle to share unwanted gifts, to avoid throwing things away – someone surely somewhere would love it. On sharing apps, over 50% of items in hyperlocal circles get requested by neighbours within 20 minutes!
12. Bonus New Year’s Resolution: CHANGE YOUR BANK
It is time. Mothertree ranks 16 UK major banks for how their current accounts contribute to climate change. A £10k deposit is the annual equivalent of driving 10,732 miles. Your money could be endorsing the investments in destructive global fossil fuels projects (not to mention worse atrocities). One of the greatest gifts you can give mother nature is to divest your support from these highly-capitalistic systems and support small, conscious banks.