On one hand, you find a baby in a manger, the simplicity of shepherds and Mary pondering those events in her heart. On the other hand, the hill of gifts under the tree, the banquet of wasted food and the mountain of trash in the end. What is left of the spiritual significance of Christmas? Green Church wishes you a Green Christmas.
Taking care of Creation for Christmas
Some eco-friendly ideas
1. Use 90 to 95% less energy.
2. Last at least seven times longer than ordinary lights.
3. Are more durable and don’t have any breakable filaments or glass bulbs.
4. Produce less heat, thereby reducing the risk of fire.
1. Why not buy a potted tree this year? You can transplant it outside in the spring or let it grow on your balcony and bring it back inside for use next Christmas.
2. If you buy a real tree, find out if your municipality picks them up after Christmas for mulching.
1. Deck your halls with handmade decorations like popcorn and fresh cranberry chains. A biodegradable choice!
2. Buy decorations you can reuse year after year. Instead of throwing out old ornaments, consider repainting them.
1. Everyone has items that they don’t use or are as good as new. Give gifts of repaired or refurbished items. Are we so wealthy that we always have to buy things new?
2. Buy environmentally-friendly gifts that the receivers will appreciate. Buy products certified EcoLogo or Energy Star, the symbol of high energy efficiency.
1. Use cloth gift bags instead of paper. You can craft wonderful personalized bags that may be appreciated as much as the gift inside, and can be reused.
2. Or you can use old posters, photos or comics from the newspaper, or magazine pages to wrap presents.
3. To add the finishing touch to your gifts, use pinecones, evergreen branches or other colourful objects from nature instead of store-bought ribbons and bows.
4. Be gentle this year when opening your presents and save the paper and ribbon for next year!
5. Even simpler, put your presents in reusable gift bags!
1. Avoid idling your engine. Modern cars need only 30 seconds to warm up in the winter.
2. Carpool or take the bus, if possible.
3. Tune up your car and check the air pressure in your tires. A poorly-maintained car consumes up to 50% more gas.
4. Take all excess weight out of your car; remove snow from the roof and wheel rims.
1. Avoid disposable plates, but if you have to use them, choose paper rather than plastic.
2. Compost your organic table scraps.
3. Pay attention to overpackaging and choose products that result in less garbage.
4. Recycle whatever you can.
1. Cooking and entertaining can really warm up your home. Before the kitchen gets too hot, turn down your thermostat. Don’t open the window.
2. In winter, use fans to circulate warm air through the house.
3. If lots of people are coming and going, make sure you close doors properly and keep the warm air inside for you and your guests.
4. If you heat with a wood stove, make sure your chimney is clean and that your wood stove is EPA-certified. Minimize use of your fireplace.