Top tips for a green holiday

EcoConsumer Tom Watson, from King County’s Solid Waste Division, is pretty awesome. He has created an online hub offering tips for reducing waste during the holidays. As Tom says, “It all starts with individual actions, and the festive holiday season provides a surprising number of opportunities for conserving resources and addressing climate change.”

Thanks to Mirror Lake Elementary in Federal Way for having us at your school's craft fair. It was a lot of fun.
Thanks to Mirror Lake Elementary in Federal Way for having us at your school’s craft fair. It was a lot of fun.

Here are our six favorite green holiday resources from Tom’s long list of tips:


  1. No time to shop with only a few days before the holiday? Give green with a homemade gift made out of reused and recycled materials. Find creative ideas, perfect for last-minute gifts.recycle-holidays-wrapping-paper-large
  2. After Santa visits, all of the wrapping paper left under the tree can be a little overwhelming. Most wrapping paper can be recycled, but anything with foil or glitter has to go in the garbage.
  3. You can also just skip buying gift wrap altogether by using any of these greener alternatives: Outdated maps, Paper bags (decorate them yourself!), Fabric, Children’s art
  4. Have you ever considered a living Christmas tree? King County Parks is partnering with Swansons’ Trees for Salmon program to support healthy salmon habitat in King County. Purchasing a living tree is environmentally friendly, cost effective and only requires a bit of extra effort. Look for the label “You Can Donate This Tree” (pictured above) while shopping for your holiday tree. Return your tree by Jan. 18 and Swansons will donate it to King County Parks for to be planted in one of our restoration sites.
  5. Update holiday lighting or other home lighting with energy-efficient LED bulbs, and recycle your old strings of lights at more than 40 locations in King County. The copper in the wires has value for recycling.
  6. After the holiday, recycle your Christmas tree to give it new life as wood chips or compost.

Tweet: King County's tips for wasting less during the holidays:

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