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Five Ways of Reducing Plastic for an Environmentally Friendly Christmas

Christmas time is the perfect time to share gifts with your family and friends. However, our environment is burdened by the season of giving – with many single-use plastics used for wrapping, packaging and food products across the giving season.

Australia has banned single-use plastics in many places that we shop and eat – including the removal of single-use shopping bags, plastic packaging, and eating utensils. Over the next 20 years, these policies will help to prevent 2.7 billion items of plastic from entering the environment in New South Wales alone.

We all need to be vigilant, together we can make sure our Christmas festivities include thinking about the 5R’s – Reduce, Reuse, Refuse, Recycle & REPLACE!

Reduce:
Give Experiences

Christmas is a great time to give experiences – whether it’s tickets to a show, a meal with friends, or giving to charity.

The opportunity is endless to explore these personal connections and find a memorable experience to share!
Reuse:
Choose Reusable Gifts

Reusable gifts are the gifts that keep on giving – not only can they be used multiple times, but they can be passed on!

Disposable gifts are a huge burden for our environment throughout the Christmas period and moving towards gifts with long shelf lives is a way of making sure our gifts don’t end up unused or in the bin.

Refuse:
Say No to Plastic Wrapping & Sticky Tape​

Studies show that Australians use over 150,000 kilometres of wrapping paper per year during Christmas time! That’s enough to wrap around our equator 4 times.

We need to opt out of non-recyclable wrapping paper and sticky tape. Great alternatives include reusable fabric, brown paper & eco-friendly wrapping paper.

Recycle:
Sort Your Recycling​

Recycling our wrapping paper, food containers, and packaging is a great way of alleviating our environmental footprint this Christmas.

The packaging covering our gifts, food, and Christmas items can often be recycled. E-waste, such as electronics, batteries, and screens, can be repurposed by dropping them at designated recycling points or collection facilities.

Replace:
Ecofriendly Gift Alternatives​

Many popular festive gifts have eco-friendly alternatives. These are designed with sustainable practices - and may be biodegradable, recycled or produced from environmentally friendly materials.

Great choices include plant-based products, zero-waste gifts, and items that come with complimentary green offsets such as planting trees or carbon capture.

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Five Quick Tips for Businesses

Organise holiday experiences for your team over disposable gifts - these could be vouchers for dining, a movie, or a donation to your team's favourite charities.

For your end-of-year gifts, choose reusable items rather than gifts that will only be used a few times. Find gifts that will provide utility throughout the holiday period.

Avoid disposable wrapping this year and choose gifts with minimal packaging.

Replace gifts for your team with eco-friendly alternatives, and look for options that are produced using sustainable practices.

Remember to separate recyclables after your office Christmas party. Think recyclable when sourcing your end-of-year office food and drinks and remember to instruct your team members to use the right bin!

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