With the holiday season right around the corner, there will be more giving and quality time being spent. With family and friends having more gatherings there is normally a higher amount of waste that is created this time of year. This may be hard to control but it’s important to focus on sustainability. Here are some tips to help you have a greener holiday season.

Buy a Real Tree

Although this tip is literally green, buying a real Christmas tree is more eco-friendly than using an artificial one. Growing trees has a great impact on human health so why not go out and buy one that will be cut down anyway. You can even get a pot that’s big enough for your tree and keep it inside or outside. When the holidays are over, you can also donate your trees to organizations that use them to make reusable material and items. The last thing you should do with a tree is burning it in your fireplace.

Energy Saving Lights

The holidays are nothing without bright lights to help you deck the halls. Many people enjoy decorating the exterior of their home to bring joy to their neighborhood and community. With lights on at all hours of the night, your electricity bill will likely go up. To cut back on energy use consider buying LED  holiday lights. Not only do they use 1/10 as much energy as regular lights used during the holidays but they also last much longer. Newer lights also come with timers that allow you to set an on and off time for your outdoor lights. There’s no reason to keep them on during hours where most people are sleeping and not riding around your neighborhood. When your lights go out or you’re simply done using them, check out your town’s recycling center so they can dispose of them properly.

Recycled Gift Wrap

Cut back on the use of regular gift wrapping paper and try out some eco-friendly options. Many places offer recycled wrapping paper that is made with soy-based inks. There’s also the option of using newspaper to wrap gifts and giving the bottom of your tree an old-fashioned look. If you’re unable to get your hand on eco-friendly options then you can try some practices such as reusing old ribbon and gift bags.