How To Reduce Holiday Waste

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It’s the holiday season, and you can give a gift that gives back in more ways than just one.

Kay McKeen, the founder and executive director of SCARCE, a non-profit dedicated to creating sustainable communities, says planning ahead can help reduce your carbon footprint this holiday season.

“We can all look at what we’re doing and say ‘Mm, I can do that better,’” said McKeen. “How about carpooling, plan your routes. If you’re going to go to a bunch of stores plan it. Plan the map, setup so you don’t waste gas, and don’t idle your cars while you’re waiting out of the stores.”

How To Reduce Holiday Waste

McKeen said between Thanksgiving and New Years Americans increase their garbage output by 25%. But, there are ways to reduce that percentage like using cloth napkins instead of paper, using glass plates instead of Styrofoam ones, and wrapping gifts with reusable bags.

“I’d rather put money in the gift than the wrapping paper,” said McKeen.

Green Presents

If you’re still stuck on what to give your love ones for the holidays, McKeen has plenty of green alternatives. Like a circuit board notebook for someone who loves computers or a picture frame made from a bike chain could be a great option for the bike enthusiast in your life.

“There are so many things you can look online, ideas that you can do or ideas someone else has come up with,” said McKeen. “You can have gifts that are good for the environment and very special for you family member.”

Another Tip To Reduce Holiday Waste

Another tip is if you’re sending a holiday card this year, send one that uses recyclable materials.

Naperville News 17’s Christian Canizal reports.