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Blogmas 2020

Small Changes for a More Sustainable Christmas

Today we’ll be looking at 8 small and easy changes you can make to have a more sustainable Christmas. Not only are a lot of these ideas better for the environment, but they’ll also save you quite a lot of money as well.

1) Buy second-hand decorations and gifts

Some people might not love this idea, but I personally don’t see anything wrong with it. A lot of the time you can find such amazing treasures in charity shops, so why not share some of that joy with other people. After all, it’s the thought that counts, right?

2) Environmentally-friendly wrapping paper

Although the colourful and glittery wrapping papers might be pleasing to the eye, there are much more eco-friendly options. The shiny wrapping papers often can’t be recycled, unlike kraft/brown paper. Kraft paper is supposedly a much more sustainable option because it’s recyclable and as an added bonus it’s usually more durable too. I also think that personally, brown paper combined with a bow or some string can look so aesthetically pleasing and traditional.

Photo by Kari Shea on Unsplash

3) Shop at local businesses

Small businesses can always do with some extra support, at Christmas especially! With so many unique and special ideas and creations on websites like Etsy, it’s definitely worth a look. Another great thing about shopping small is that it makes for a more sustainable Christmas overall. For example, according to their website Etsy is now the first global online store to fully balance out the environmental impact of deliveries by offsetting carbon emissions.

4) Walk more, drive less

It’s no surprise that walking is a much more environmentally-friendly option than driving. Although these cold and miserable months can make the idea of driving much more tempting, do you really need to drive to that shop that’s only 5 minutes away?

5) Send Christmas cards electronically

This has a few benefits. Firstly e-cards are usually much more affordable than going out and buying lots of individual cards. You also don’t have to worry about stamps and making sure they get to their destination in time. Secondly, the e-cards are much more environmentally-friendly than paper cards, because you’re saving paper, as well as reducing petrol emissions caused by delivery vans.

6) Adopt an animal for a Christmas present

I actually decided to give this a go this Christmas. Christmas is definitely a time of giving what you can, when you can. What better way to catch two fish with one worm? WWF are an incredible charity who work to protect the environment and thousands of animals in the wild. If you go to their website they’ll provide lots of information about their work, and suggestions for which animal you could adopt. They’ll even tell you which animals are the most endangered and in need of the most help. I used this as my guide and decided to go for a tiger!

It was also a lot cheaper than I thought it would be, because obviously you can donate as much as you liked; but if you’re doing a one-off payment they allow you to donate anything above £36 for the year. That price includes a welcome pack, cuddly toy, and some updates over the course of the year to see how your contribution has helped them.

7) Wrap up warm to avoid using central heating

I’m sure this won’t be the first time you’re hearing this, but the next sustainable Christmas tip is to avoid using central heating wherever possible. People rave on about these lovely Christmas jumpers, well why not put them to good use? The use of gas central heating releases quite a lot of carbon monoxide emissions, which is a really harmful gas. It happens to be odourless and colourless; meaning that people don’t often think about it when they’re cranking up the thermostat.

8) Don’t rip off the wrapping paper so you can reuse it

Mum used to have us do this when we were growing up and we used to always take the mick. However, now that I’m older I can appreciate how this makes for a much more sustainable Christmas. In being careful with the wrapping paper, it means that you can reuse it for years to come, ultimately recycling it and saving on paper.


I hope this post has given you some ideas for how you can help protect the environment this Christmas season. Becoming more sustainable is something that I’ve really tried to work on during 2020; and will continue to do as we enter 2021. If you have any more tips on sustainability, let me know in the comments below! See you tomorrow for another Blogmas post.

Click here to read my Blogmas Tag post: https://www.emgoingplaces.com/2020/12/the-christmas-tag-of-2020-blogger-challenge/

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2 Comments

  • Michelle

    Love this! The WWF animals are soooo cute. I try to reduce waste as much as possible at Christmas but I do enjoy writing and sending real cards instead of e-cards. It’s an old tradition I’m not quite ready to give up yet.

    • Emma

      They’re adorable! I’m so glad I decided to adopt one of their animals this Christmas, the charity does such a wonderful job. You’re such an inspiration to me when it comes to sustainable living, it’s one of the things I love most about your blog Michelle 🙂

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