December 20th – Blog by UCRRA Recycling Educator Tanesia White

Did you know that Americans generate 25% more waste during the holidays between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day? Holidays can be stressful at times, and most of us overspend or overindulge during the festivities. According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), holiday retail sales in November and December will increase by 6-8%, resulting in $942.6-$960.4 billion in spending.

Before buying something new, ask yourself:

  1. Do I (or the person I am getting this gift for) need this item? How will I/they use it?
  2. How is it made? How long will it last?
  3. Is it reusable? Can it be recycled?
  4. Can I find it secondhand?
  5. Could another item I already have achieve the same task?

Life choices and behaviors have the potential to significantly reduce waste before it enters our homes and lives. Check out our blog post “Greening the Holidays” to learn more about buying less, choosing wisely, and making things last. Aside from reducing, reusing, and recycling, there are other ways to combat waste. Upcycling is a creative and fun way to repurpose unwanted items into new, useful items or works of art. Learn how to make your own Upcycled Holiday Ornaments by watching the videos below!