Thanksgiving is a time for many of us to gather with family and friends. Your Thanksgiving meal and the activities that go along with it present many opportunities to be sustainable and eco-friendly:
- When shopping for your Thanksgiving meal, keep two words in mind: organic and local. These keywords will guarantee a fresher, more nutritious meal.
- Set the table with cloth napkins and reusable dishes, glasses, and silverware. Consider renting more formal tableware that you might not use very often. Also save and reuse decorations.
- After holiday festivities, put leftovers in recyclable containers, and share them with family, friends, or others.
- Where possible, compost leftover food scraps, leaves, and grass clippings.
- After the meal, fill your dishwasher to capacity before running it. You will run fewer cycles, which saves energy.
- Wash and reuse empty glass and plastic jars, milk jugs, coffee cans, dairy tubs, and other similar containers that would otherwise get thrown away. These containers can be used to store leftovers.
- Show your guests where to put recyclables such as aluminum, glass, and plastic beverage containers.
- Avoid placing hard, thick, or waxy food scraps down the drain. These materials can clog the pipes or damage garbage disposal blades and send parts of your sink to the landfill before their time.
- Buy products in concentrate, bulk, or in refillable containers. Many items are available in these sizes. They reduce packaging waste and can save you money! Combine waste reducing practices, such as buying coffee in bulk and storing it in your leftover empty coffee cans.
- Instead of firmly planting yourself in front of the TV for the day, consider getting some fresh air or playing a board game. Take advantage of the time together with friends and family while decreasing your energy usage.
- If you going away from home for the holidays, to save energy, turn down your thermostat and put lights on timers.
November is an excellent time of year to conduct neighborhood food or clothing drives to help those in need.