Thursday, December 9, 2010

Season's Greening!

Did you know that between Thanksgiving and New Year's, Americans throw away one million extra tons of garbage every week?
Here’s some Green Tips (and facts) that even Santa would cheer...
Real vs. artificial Christmas tree - real trees can be recycled which is an easy way to return a renewable and natural source back to the environment. By recycling into mulch, trees can be used in landscaping and gardening or chipped and used for playground material, hiking trails, paths and walkways. An even better option is to purchase a living, potted tree this Christmas and then plant it after the holidays. Some asthma sufferers may not be able to handle a live tree. Artificial trees can be cost efficient, convenient and reused for years but on the down (and not green side) they are typically manufactured with metal and polyvinyl chloride (PVC), a non-biodegradable, petroleum-derived plastic plus they are typically manufactured in China—ouch! If you want to go with an artificial tree, your best bet is to buy a used one.
When purchasing Christmas lights LED are your best choice because they use 90% less energy than conventional lights.
While shopping for presents be sure to buy locally and support our Cleveland economy. From art to candy and even resale shops our town is booming with many cool and unique stores that offer a variety of “green” gifts for the holidays. Also, consider Fair Trade marked items which are good for the environment as well as people, since viable work depends on reliable supplies of resources. Plus a Fair-Trade gift gives twice—to the recipient and the craftsperson. While shopping online make sure to either reuse that cardboard box it’s delivered in or break it down and take it to the Bay Village Service Center Drop Off for recycling. If you put it out on your tree lawn for trash pick up it will go to the landfill—reuse, recycle!
Instead of buying Christmas wrapping paper why not use the comics or an outdated map or if you want to get creative try stamping (with vegetable based ink of course) on some plain newsprint or use the inside of a paper bag. Don't forget to reuse all those gift bags you received last year’s gifts in.
When entertaining let your guests know that you are having a “green” event, and ask them to help by using recycle containers if bringing anything and reusable containers for leftovers. Buy local food items at the grocery store or farmer’s market. Set up a recycle container to collect plastics, bottles and cans. Recycle your cardboard boxes (such as cracker boxes) at the Bay Village Service Center Recycle Drop Off. Buy re-usable dinner ware, silver ware and cloth napkins. Set up a compost bin in your backyard to collect organic food scraps such as fruit and vegetable scraps. Also, remember to take a reusable cloth bag or box to the store as an alternative to plastic bags when bringing home your purchases.
The Bay Village Green Team wishes everyone a wonderful and very GREEN Holiday Season!