Dreaming of a green Christmas?

Date published: 20 December 2019

With Christmas fast approaching, we have compiled a handy guide for you based on the 5 R’s – Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Rot. We would urge you to keep the 5 R’s in mind throughout the festive season to help make this your most sustainable Christmas yet.


It may seem a little cheesy but it really is true – The very best gift you can give your loved ones this Christmas is time. Otherwise remember:

Refuse (to purchase): Selection boxes! Plastic.
Reduce: Kris Kindle (do we really need so much stuff? Think of it as one less thing to re-gift!)
Reuse: That said, re-gifting is perfectly acceptable! (one man’s trash really is another’s treasure).
Recycle: Cards (Top Tip: cut away the front of one you particularly like and simply glue it to a plain piece of folded card to give it a whole new lease of life), tags, bags (no one will be the wiser!).
Rot: Think natural when it comes to gifts this year.


Changing your Christmas décor each year is both wasteful and unnecessary. A little creativity can really go a long way.

Refuse: No, you do NOT need that life-size Santa for your garden.
Reduce: Less is more when it comes to Christmas décor. Keep things simple and classic. Think bunches of natural holly and pine cones (just dry these out in a low oven first to extend their life).
Reuse: It may seem a whole lot easier just to replace those broken lights but just 5 minutes with a screwdriver will probably fix the problem (and think how chuffed you will be with yourself!)
Recycle: The swap or charity shop (before and after the big day).
Rot: Why not get crafty and use items such as cinnamon sticks, and clove studded orange to create some traditional festive cheer?


Christmas is the season of excess and a little overindulgence is perfectly ok. However, there are several ways you can cut your food waste (and save money) this year.

Refuse: Don’t be tempted by brochures. They may appear to offer irresistible bargains but encourage overspending.
Reduce: Only buy what you need (organic and local if possible). Also ask if visiting family members can bring a dish each. People love to feel involved.
Reuse: The freezer is your friend! Make sure you leave plenty of space for all those leftovers ahead of the big day.
Recycle: Who doesn’t love a turkey sandwich? Send guests home with a goody bag each to reduce waste or, better still, make up a plate for an elderly neighbour who may be spending Christmas alone.
Rot: Compost everything else including peelings, bread, cooked and uncooked meat

Now for a quick recap on the 5 S’s:

Simplify: Think less is more!
Slow down: Only go to the events where you connect with people.
Savour: Enjoy quality downtime with loved ones.
Support: Christmas can be a difficult and lonely time for many so remember to offer support those who may need help.
Stay present: Go for a walk, enjoy the smell of baking, don’t try to multitask!

The team at Earthology would like to wish you a happy, healthy and green Christmas and New Year!

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