Ten ways to reduce your waste these holidays

Issued: 24 December 2019

Queenslanders are being encouraged to think about things they can do to reduce their impact on the environment this festive season.

For many Queenslanders the break over the festive season provides the perfect excuse to enjoying our beautiful outdoors.

It is also the perfect time to reflect on how we can minimise our impact on the environment to ensure future generations can enjoy it as much as we do.

Reducing our waste is one of the best presents we can give the planet at this time of year.

It’s also a great way to save money.

Here are some tips to reduce the amount of waste you send to landfill over the festive period:

  1. Cut food waste: Think carefully about how much food you need to prepare for Christmas lunch. Nearly half of the average waste in a household bin is organic waste (green waste and food waste) with food waste alone costing households more than $3,000 a year.
  2. Re-use leftovers: Extra Christmas ham makes great sandwiches on Boxing Day. Alternatively, any leftovers that aren’t safe to eat can be composted.
  3. Reconsider wrapping paper: Instead of using wrapping paper that ends up in the bin, kit out your gifts in useful items like tea-towels or other linen. It adds to the charm and unique-ness of your gift and reduces waste.
  4. Save your containers and cash them in: The Containers for Change program offers a great way to make back a bit of money after Christmas. Find your nearest return point: https://www.containersforchange.com.au/qld/where-can-i-return
  5. Think digital: We all have so much ‘stuff’. It’s filling up our landfills. Instead of giving some ‘thing’, consider a digital subscription. Magazines, Newspapers, streaming video and music services are all great present ideas.
  6. Give the gift that does good: Making a donation on someone else’s behalf is a gift that does good – good for people, good for the planet.
  7. Give your time: We all know someone that could use some help around the house, a night of free babysitting, or someone to watch their pets while they go away for a weekend. Why not offer your time instead of a physical gift?
  8. Donate what you don’t want: Any unwanted gifts can be donated to charity, rather than putting them in the bin. But don’t leave them on the street. Ensure your donations are safely deposited in a donation bin, or taken in store.

  9. Gift an experience: A camping trip, a visit to a theme park or a trip to the zoo all make great presents. Plus the memories of those trips will last longer than most toys.

  10. Recharge: It seems like all toys need batteries these days. Consider investing in rechargeable batteries ahead of Christmas morning. They might cost more initially, but they could save you money in the long run. Every recharge also represents a set of batteries that won’t end up in landfill.

For more environmental information and advice, visit www.des.qld.gov.au