Make your white Christmas a little greener
By OVO Energy Thursday 06 December 2018
Christmas. It’s a time for family, food and festive cheer – but somewhere amongst the mountains of wrapping paper, the piles of leftovers and the majestic twinkling of a 3,000-bulb tree, there’s probably room for a few green tweaks that can really help our planet.
Bring your Christmas lights into the 21st Century
We've all got at least one old box of hand-me-down Christmas lights. Well, if you’re still using incandescent Christmas lights on your tree or to decorate your house, you’re not making the most of super-efficient energy-saving LED bulbs, which can cut the cost of running your Christmas lights by up to 90%. They’re also much brighter than traditional bulbs. And that means your house will really stand out from next-door's paltry display.
Forget the fakes. Get an eco-friendly real tree
Mmm. Pine-fresh. And while a fake tree will undoubtedly last longer than a real tree, there’s still no way for them to be properly recycled – so your ‘eco-friendly’ fake tree ends up in the landfill eventually.
Eco-friendly real trees, on the other hand, can go onto fulfil many other uses, like using the needles for garden mulch or even towards creating nesting space for birds. And if you’d rather not keep the tree into the New Year, some local councils might even offer a local collection scheme – just check your local council's website for details.
Cut out packaging and food waste
When you hit the shops for the big Christmas food shop, it’s easy to forget what you’ll end up with once the eating and drinking is done – food and packaging waste. You can make a real difference by buying loose items or choosing items that are lighter on the plastics. And if you really want to help the oceans, why not try and adopt a few more plastic-free tips over Christmas?
And as for food – instead of throwing away scraps from the Christmas roast, why not try creating a festive soup, or some cheeseboard mac ‘n cheese? It also helps to stay on your toes and make sure any other food waste ends up in the compost bin, rather than going in the normal bin.
One car is better than two
This one is a big one. It’s almost guaranteed you’ll have to travel somewhere to see relatives over Christmas. So if you’re taking a car ride, why not share with other people heading the same way? Being tucked up in the back seat with family, friends or neighbours may cost you your sanity – but it will also help to cut down on your carbon emissions. And it’s a great excuse to get the Christmas tunes on and have an unforgettable festive sing-a-long.
Planet kind cards and wrapping paper
Every year, up to a billion Christmas cards and 8,000 tonnes of wrapping paper end up in a landfill. Which is a real shame, as it could all be recycled. So, once the fun is over, make sure it all goes into the paper recycling bin at home or at your local recycling centre.
It’s also really eco-friendly to make your own cards with recycled paper and cardboard and use wrapping paper made from recycled paper. It also means you can get really creative with the cards you send (or hand deliver…).
Go green for just an extra £5 a month
All our plans come with 33% renewable electricity as standard, but if you want to be that bit greener, we’ve made it easy for you. Just pick your favourite plan, and upgrade it to 100% renewable electricity whenever you like with our Green Electricity upgrade. We also have a Green Gas upgrade, which means all your energy can now be less harmful to the environment. Upgrade anytime, cancel whenever. It’s that simple.