Five tips for a sustainable holiday season

Published on 15 December 2022

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Whether you’re celebrating Christmas, Hannukah, or the prospect of a few days off work, the holiday season is about coming together with friends, family and loved ones, and celebrating with food, gifts, and decorations.

But there’s no reason all that celebrating has to come at a cost to our environment. Here are some simple tips for those of you looking to celebrate the holiday season in (sustainable) style.

Gifting sustainably

Cut down on packaging and unwanted gifts this year by treating loved ones to presents that are homemade, home grown, pre-loved, experiences, or charitable donations.

Save money and limit your waste by wrapping that special something in left over wrapping paper, children’s artwork, recycled paper, newspaper, a reusable box or fabric.

Rather than treating everyone, put on your Secret Santa hat and pick out something special for your chosen giftee. This is a great way to reduce your environmental impact whilst saving money. 

Eating sustainably

It’s all too easy to buy too much of everything and end up with a lot of food waste, these simple tips will keep your bin from overflowing this holiday season:

  • make a list before you leave home of only the things you really need to buy
  • turn your leftovers into a tasty new meal 
  • invite guests to bring a container and send them home with any leftovers
  • if you’re celebrating Hanukkah freeze any leftover latkes to enjoy another day.

And whether you’re plating up a fish, meat or plant-based feast, Sustainability Victoria have put together a guide to help anyone hoping to make sustainably friendly choices.  

Decorating sustainably

Whilst cut and plastic Christmas trees have become festive mainstays, both come with a sizeable carbon footprint. With a little imagination, ladders, book stacks, and indoor plants, can all add festive flair to your space. Make your improvised tree sparkle with LED lights - they use less energy, last longer, and look just as good!

Alternatively, invest in a potted native pine tree that you can bring inside year after year. If you can’t resist a cut tree, make sure you use our free drop off at the Stonnington Waste Transfer Station between 27 - 31 December 2022, and we'll turn them into nutritious compost and mulch.

If you’re celebrating Hanukkah light up your menorah with non-toxic soy-based candles.  

Socialising sustainably

Whether it’s a picnic in the park or a beachfront BBQ, ditch the single-use plastic items and choose reusable alternatives instead. On 1 February 2023 the Victorian Government’s Single-use Plastics Ban begins. Get ban ready this holiday season and pack reusable straws, cutlery, food and drink containers, and crockery, straight from your kitchen cupboards.  

When visiting friends and family, get from A to B sustainably and give your car a holiday too. In previous years, public transport has been free on Christmas Day. If your car is the only option, pick up other guests along the way, to reduce emissions and engage in some carpool carol singing!

Celebrate the holiday season in (sustainable) style this year without missing out on any of the indulgence or cheer!

Tagged as: Christmas in Stonnington