December 20th 2019
It’s estimated that in Australia alone, our waste increases by around 30% over Christmastime. What can we do at home and work to be festive and thoughtful this season?
Here are some simple switches that can help reduce what we consume and throwaway this Christmas.
#1 Savour the moment Aussies receive over 20 million unwanted gifts at Christmastime. (*#1) It’s easy to forget the real essence of Christmas in bring families and friends together when we’re bombarded with the endless ‘must haves’ in our culture of excess. But there are more conscious ways we can show someone we care. Experiences are a great way to spend quality time together in our hectic lifestyles and save buying a gift that someone may not really need.
#2 All wrapped up If you are gifting, why not use existing materials for wrapping? More than 150,000km of wrapping paper is used in Australia (*#2) enough to wrap around the Earth’s equator nearly four times! Who Gives a Crap toilet paper or reusable packaging make a great alternative and will prevent single use paper going to waste. And if you do receive a present that’s not quite for you- gift it on to someone or donate it to charity.
#3 Planet and pudding It’s estimated 90% of Aussies usually discard over 25% of their food during the festive period (December 1 – January 1) (*#3). Food waste plays a leading role in contributing to GHG emissions so we can make sure we’re only consuming what we really need, and reduce our carbon footprint. Meal planning and writing lists will help you ensure you don’t overbuy and will save you money. Throwing away one burger wastes the same amount of water as a 90-minute shower when you factor in the production from farm to plate, so it goes to show the vast system that goes towards creating one item of food. (*#4)
#4 Office tricks Secret Santa often falls into the trap of buying colleagues ‘token’ gifts that are not always wanted! Ungifted Secret Santa is a great way to give your colleagues a gift while ensuring nothing will get thrown away- they’re not physical gifts, but memorable surprises. Gifts include coffee refills for a week, January timesheets sorted or be a PA for the day! Alternatively, you can create your own surprises.
This year at Frost*collective, we have created an alternative Christmas tree made from 40 recycled boxes. It was important for us to make our tree a concept, and give it a purpose. The boxes were used to collect an array of donations for the Woman and Girls Emergency Centre near our Sydney office. They manage two crisis accommodation centres, housing up to 40 women and girls who are in need of safety. It was important for us to have a positive social impact within our community and bring even a little sparkle to someone’s life.
"It is so great to see all our Frosties contributing so generously to help our local community. This is something I’ve really focused on to reduce our impact as much as possible within the studio. We obtain supplies from local sources to reduce our carbon footprint and we hosted a great ‘Nup to the Cup’ this year, which involved a vegan lunch and fascinators designed from ‘waste’. We’ve got lots planned for next year to continue helping our team on lessening their impact at work" Tresta Solling | Studio Coordinator
(*#1) Gumtree Smart Santa Survey 2016 via Huffington Post