December 17-23, 2008 | Brisbane News
Just because you want to help the planet doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy the festive season. Lucy Brook highlights a few environmentally sound ideas.
ENERGY- EFFICIENT LIGHTS
The season of twinkling lights is upon us, but all that shimmering can expend huge amounts of energy. Switching to light emitting diodes – or LEDs- will save you money in the long run, says Tracey Bailey, owner of the Biome Eco stores in Paddington and Brisbane City. “LED lights are slightly more expensive than standard tree lights but use less electricity so cost less to run.”
Tracey says LEDs, available at department stores, also generate less heat so reduce fire risk, have a longer lifespan than regular bulbs and don’t contain mercury.
Candles for tables create ambience and an environmentally friendly glimmer – try Australian made and owned Queen B
Beeswax candles ($8.50 each, from Biome, www.biome.com.au) which are free of petroleum products.
And don’t forget to turn off Christmas lights overnight – the big man will still find you.
PLASTIC’S NOT FANTASTIC
Catering for rellies often means using plastic plates, cups and cutlery – a notion that makes environmentalists squirm.
“Disposable plastic plates and cups are made from petrochemicals, creating pollution in their production and when thrown out they sit in landfill forever,” says Tracey Bailey from Biome. The solution? Either some serious washing up, or stylish, earth-friendly alternatives. Try the Palm Leaf Plates from Biome ($14.95 for 25), which can be cut up and used on your garden as mulch.