Top tips for staying green in Cambs this Christmas

ACROSS England this Christmas millions of tons of waste will be generated from the festivities. We re talking mountains of mincemeat jars (5.5million) piled onto 6.5million cranberry sauce jars and 12million pickle jars. Then there will be 8million rea

ACROSS England this Christmas millions of tons of waste will be generated from the festivities.

We're talking mountains of mincemeat jars (5.5million) piled onto 6.5million cranberry sauce jars and 12million pickle jars.

Then there will be 8million real Christmas trees and one billion Christmas cards.

And this is before we get into the detail.


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In general Christmas generates three-quarters of a million tonnes more waste than for a similar period at any other time of the year.

But you can go green and help make a difference and here is our guide to make sure you don't let your environment have a festive hangover.

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Reduce:

* Don't forget to take your carrier bags with you when Christmas shopping

* Instead of giving gifts with lots of packaging, why not consider book or CD tokens, or vouchers for a beauty or health therapy

* Use recyclable wrapping paper and paper or cotton ribbons - even better, why not try cloth wrapping this year (see www.recap.co.uk for details)

* Check the www.lovefoodhatewaste.com/cambridgeshireandpeterborough website for top tips for food preservation and recipes for making the most of leftovers

Reuse:

* Have fun making your own Christmas cards from old magazines, leaflets and other materials

* Christmas is also a great time to think of others - why not donate any unwanted items to a charity shop

* Even broken mobile phones can be donated for a good cause (see www.fauna-flora.org/recycling.php)

* Why not sell things you no longer need through www.swapandsell.recap.co.uk

* Use sturdy boxes or gift bags for your gifts. These can be easily reused as storage in the home or as gift packaging

Recycle:

* When buying gifts, look for products made from recycled materials

* Keep an eye on recycling labels on packaging for food and other products. The retailers use them to help you recycle as much as possible. If you are not sure, follow the advice of Huntingdonshire District Council.

* Don't forget to recycle cardboard boxes you cannot reuse, along with your plastic bottles, glass jars and bottles, and tins and cans

* You can recycle your real Christmas tree in a number of ways.

* Leave it out for collection with your green composting bin in January

* Bring it along to on Sunday, January 3, 2010 at Huntingdonshire District Council's annual tree shredding event at Hinchingbrooke Country Park. From 10.30 until 3pm

* Take it to your nearest household waste recycling centre

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