‘Tis the season for sustainability | Guest column

  • Wednesday, December 6, 2017 1:52pm
  • Opinion

Ready or not, the holidays are here! That means it’s time for friends, family, hot chocolate and, of course, gift giving. But with all that good cheer and gift giving comes a whole lot of waste. The recycling experts at WM have some yuletide tips that’ll make this your greenest holiday season yet.

Let’s start with that holiday gift list. Consider giving experiences or zero-waste gifts such as music or sports lessons, gym memberships, or tickets to a sporting event or concert. You can even make your own gift certificates for a special dinner for two at home or night out at the local art walk or a movie theater. And don’t forget thrift stores and consignment shops. You can often find one-of- a-kind items and stretch your money much further.

When it comes to wrapping those special gifts, avoid generating waste by making your own recycled wrapping paper with old maps, posters or pages from the newspaper or magazines. The comics section can be particularly good for a pop of bright color.

For holiday greetings and party invitations, consider e-cards. They’re great for sharing photos and keeping in touch while saving paper and postage.

Another way to green your holidays and put some green into your neighbor’s pockets is shopping local. By supporting Snoqualmie stores and businesses, you’ll find unique gifts and reduce your carbon footprint. (Remember your reusable shopping bags!)

When your online orders arrive, remember that most packaging is recyclable. Cardboard boxes and non-foil gift wrap can go into your recycling cart.

What about decorating? Get creative and use recycled or compostable materials for your decorations this season. Decorate your home with paper snowflakes made from junk mail, hang garlands strung with popcorn and cranberries, get festive with an army of gingerbread men, and set out fragrant bundles of cinnamon sticks or ornaments of dried orange slices to make your home smell like your favorite holiday memories.

Kids love getting involved in the decorations. So, when the next rainy day arrives like, say…tomorrow, try some DIY decorations to enjoy now and compost later.

The holidays are the perfect reminder to cherish the earth as much as we do our friends and family, so reduce your waste and give the gift of sustainability this holiday season.

Michelle Metzler is Waste Management’s recycling education and outreach manager. Learn more at sustainability.wm.com.

More in Opinion

Former Gov. Gary Locke discusses the importance of an accurate census count. Samantha Pak/staff photo
The importance of being counted | Windows and Mirrors

The 2020 Census is coming and that can greatly affect everything from government representation and federal funding.

Governor’s watch: timing is everything

Inslee, possible candidates eye 2020 race

I’m still warning about fascism — and now it’s no longer friendly

A political column written by Snoqualmie resident Roger Ledbetter.

Photo courtesy of Nick Wold/Mercer Island High School
                                Students from Mercer Island High School’s Margins program met with various nonprofit organizations in Los Angeles, including Watts Towers, where they speak with a representative about the organization’s sustainable garden.
Closing the margins | Windows and Mirrors

How a program at Mercer Island High School is helping students affect social change.

Legislature: History, investigations and new laws

The 2019 session of the Legislature included controversy, compromise, surprise, new law and more.

Guy Palumbo (left) and Derek Stanford
With Palumbo out, capital gains tax gets real for Democrats

His successor could be the vote leaders need. But with elections in 2020, tax may be off the table.

A progressive argument for impeachment | Column

Another perspective for citizens unsure of the situation.

Best Buddies include everyone | Windows and Mirrors

North Creek’s new club this year works to promote inclusion and helps students make friends and connections.

The Record should be the newspaper of record | Editorial

Come have coffee with the editor 10 a.m.-11 a.m. on Friday, May 17, at The Black Dog Cafe.

Start your waste reduction journey | Waste Management column

Hannah Scholes is Waste Management’s education and outreach manager.