Have yourself a sustainable little Christmas

By Louise Jeckells

20 December 2019

3 minute read

Instead of cancelling Christmas (#cancelculture) because of excess consumption, waste and problematic carols – we’ve got some sustainable alternatives based on science. (Unfortunately, we can’t help anyone out with those problematic carols).

man in christmas sweater dancing

Get a real tree (or something similar)

Buying a plastic tree from a store that has banned plastic bags feels a little off. To date, the best estimates say there are around 6-12 million metric tonnes of plastic going into the oceans each year. That works out to be around 15 shopping bags of plastic for each metre of global coastline (excluding Antarctica).

Don’t let your plastic Christmas tree end up in landfill after just a few uses. Why not buy a small tree or plant to decorate instead?

Switch to solar

Want to avoid an extraordinarily high electricity bill next quarter? Switch to solar lights to decorate your house. We’re working on developing more efficient solar cells because we know the importance of solar energy. Plus, try our alternative cooling tips to really stretch your energy budget.

animated image of the griswalds christmas movie where the father plugs in the lights

Waste not, want not

Can you imagine preparing a family meal and then throwing a third of it in the bin before you sit down to eat? Over one-third of all food produced globally is lost or wasted. In Australian households alone, four million tonnes of food is wasted every year. All that food takes water and energy to produce, transport, prepare and sell.

The takeaway here is plan better, don’t overindulge and be aware of your food wastage. Also use your leftovers and compost where you can.

Elf movie scene where elf is eating spaghetti with toppings

From sea to plate

Australians are very fond of seafood, especially over Christmas. In fact, around six million kilograms – or a staggering 40 per cent – of our annual prawn consumption occurs over Christmas alone. Aussie grown prawns are one of the healthiest sources of protein you can eat, and our farmers have arguably the best management practices of any prawn growing region in the world.

Find out where your seafood is coming from and make the sustainable choice this Christmas.To me, prawns are perfect

Skip the lounge and get outside

Rather than sitting inside watching reruns on TV and munching down mince pies, why not get outside and explore. While you’re there, contribute to science and the conservation of our native flora and fauna.

Add your sightings of plants or animals directly into the Atlas of Living Australia.

grinch saying 'i'm booked'

Give our planet a gift. Make your festive season more environmentally-friendly this year. Share your tips for being sustainable over the festive season in the comments section below.