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Updated 11 December 2013

Great green gifts

Christmas can easily become a stressful, wasteful and decidedly unspiritual consumerist frenzy, but counteracting that needn’t mean going ‘cold turkey’ on presents.

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Foregoing gifts, or insisting they be homemade, will help shrink your festive carbon footprint, but it can feel a bit dismal – especially if you're celebrating with kids.

People love giving and receiving (and some insane characters even love shopping!)

Keep the pleasure of giving alive with these environmentally conscious gift ideas:

  • Solar-charged lamps and strings of lights add a lovely gentle Christmassy glow, and will continue converting free energy into illumination on any sunny day of the year. The example shown here is the solar jar from Consol Glass.
  • A living indigenous tree – it can stand in for a Christmas tree if you add a few handmade ornaments, and it doesn't get turfed out or packed away afterwards.
  • A Wild Card: the very reasonable membership fee gives you free entry to our national parks for a year, and is an important way to support them. It's also a way of giving that doesn't involve material "things".
  • A seeded notebook or card. Store-bought wrapping paper and cards really should be phased out - unless they’re made from recycled paper. Or, if you want to go one better, seeded recycled paper: once you’re finished with it, you plant it, water it, and wait for it to burst into bloom.

Got a good green tip to share? Email me at oroseinn@sa.24.com or post on the EnviroHealth Forum – if it's a planet-saver, we'll publish it.

 
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