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Staying Plastic-Free for All Year Long

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Staying Plastic-Free for All Year Long

July is a plastic-free month. This is a global movement that educates people on the dangers of plastic and encourages them to reduce their plastic consumption for the entire month.  And while it’s a great challenge to try every July, it’s also important to stay plastic-free and sustainable for the rest of the year.

 

The holidays are particularly notorious for generating waste. Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Holiday Americans throw away 25% more trash than any other time of year. From shopping bags, decorations, packaging, to gifts, holiday waste racks up an additional 1 million tons of garbage per week to our landfills.

 

Labor Day and Halloween celebrations also lead to massive amounts of plastic waste with many cookouts and parties taking place.

 

So, how can you ensure that you have green holidays throughout the rest of the year? Don’t worry, we have a ton of ideas!

 

How To Have An Eco-Friendly Labor Day

 

Labor Day weekend is the final wind-down of the summer season and we love to spend it with loved ones with barbecues, picnics, parties and parades.

Here are some tips for hosting a more sustainable gathering.

 

Try eco-friendly grilling

 

While charcoal is considered the tastiest way to grill, it’s also the dirtiest when it comes to emissions. When burned, it releases 11 pounds of carbon per hour and releases other toxic substances like volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can be harmful to breathe in. 

Gas grills are much more efficient and release the lowest amount of carbon (5.6 pounds of carbon dioxide per hour).

Electric grills can also be eco-friendly as long as they’re powered by green sources such as hydro, wind, or solar.

 

Choose eco-conscious cleaning

 

Labor Day gatherings can leave your home in quite a mess. It’s a great opportunity to ditch your chemical-laden cleaning supplies that fill up your bin with plastic and replace them with more eco-friendly options.

 

Replenish Reno has a wide range of refillable and zero waste options for you to clean your home from laundry detergent, dish soap to dish detergent.

Not only will they reduce your carbon footprint, they’ll improve your overall indoor air quality and minimize certain health risks.

 

Don’t forget to recycle 

 

After your post-Labor Day clean up, you’ll be left with a significant amount of trash that can be recycled.

The wrong item could ruin a whole bag of recyclables - if you’re not sure whether something belongs in the bin, check your local municipal website or contact your curbside program.

Remember to empty, clean, and dry each item before you toss it in the recycling bin.

 

How to Have a Green Halloween

 

What’s truly scary about Spooky season is the amount of waste created every year from costumes, pumpkins and treats.

By making these adjustments in your traditions, you’ll better support our planet.

 

Make eco-friendly decorations

 

Instead of spending money on new decorations, get creative and repurpose items that are already in your home. What’s more, buy a pumpkin from your local farmer’s market and keep the seeds and flesh to eat later.

 

Prepare sustainable treats

 

According to the National Retail Federation's annual survey, U.S. consumers spend $2.6 billion on candy. Unfortunately, most candy wrappers can't be recycled because they are made of a mix of materials

Opt for delicious homemade treats like clementine pumpkins, ghosts and ghouls cookies, spooky popcorn and fruit roll-ups. The kids will love it!

 

Borrow or Swap a Costume 

 

85% of our clothes end up in landfills or burned. This Halloween, instead of getting a new costume, swap or borrow a costume with a friend. You can also buy second-hand costumes from your local thrift stores.  

 

How to Have a Sustainable Thanksgiving

 

 

Thanksgiving is a great time of the year for family and friends to get together but it’s also a time when many of us overindulge in consumption. Here are some tips for a green Thanksgiving.

 

Buy vegetables in cloth produce bags

 

When going grocery shopping, say no to plastic bags. Instead, bring several cloth produce bags with you. They’ll keep your produce fresher for longer and won’t contribute to the 1 billion single-use plastic bags thrown away each year.

 

Use reusable utensils

 

When serving your Thanksgiving feasts, resist the urge to use disposable plates, cutlery and cups. Not only will you save money, but you'll feel better knowing that you're not sending piles of plastic to landfills.

 

Store leftovers without plastic

 

There are many reasons to move away from plastic storage – they damage our environment, especially our oceans and they put your health at risk. If you have any leftovers from your Thanksgiving dinner, store them in eco-friendly containers like masons jars, tiffins, bento boxes or steel containers.

Additionally, replace plastic wrap with beeswax wrap which is compostable and can be used many times.

 

How to Have a Plastic Free Christmas

 

Having a sustainable Christmas is easier than you think! Here are our top tips on having a plastic free festive season.

 

Use Fabric wraps

 

Most wrapping paper contains glitter or a plastic coating which makes it hard to recyclable. You can swap it for brown paper or better yet, stylish wrapping fabrics that can be reused again and again. We often carry eco-friendly wrapping paper inside of the shop as holidays get closer. Be sure to check our online store in the coming months or sign-up for our email list to be the first to know!

 

Give eco-friendly toys

 

Teach your kids to love the environment with sustainable toys made from natural materials like wood, cork and rubber. They’re safer to play with and can enhance fun and creativity.

 

Share plastic-free adult gifts 

 

Forget throw-away novelty gifts for your loved ones this Christmas and get them reusable gifts like water bottles, coffee cups or tote bags.

If you’d  like to go the extra mile, make a sustainable self-care gift basket with refillable lotion, scented handmade candles, bamboo body brush,  natural body soap and more.

 

Switch to LED lighting

 

Americans use about 6.63 billion kWhs of electricity to light their holiday lights but this can be minimized with LED Christmas lights.

LED lights use 80 percent less energy than fluorescent incandescent lights. They‘re also safer and will last for a longer time. 

 

 

That's a wrap!

 

So there you have it!  From Labor to Christmas, these are just some of the sustainable swaps you can make this year to make your home more eco-friendly and plastic free. Visit Replenish Refillery & Gifts for more sustainable swaps you may not have thought of.

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