Today @ Colorado State has been replaced by SOURCE. This site exists as an archive of Today @ Colorado State stories between January 1, 2009 and September 8, 2014.

Environment / Sustainability

Stay green during the holidays

November 11, 2011
By Rommel McClaney

Our campus, students and faculty are well known for our commitment to sustainability. As we head into the holiday season, it's important to continue this promise to the environment. There are a few simple ways to do it.

Use the nice dinnerware

You may be having quite a few family members over for a big dinner and you may be planning on buying paper or plastic plates, cups and silverware. While it may be less of a hassle to wash up afterwards, since it is such a special time of year, you should consider using real silverware and dishes.

Even those coming to eat may be willing to donate a few plates and cups. You will reduce the amount of garbage bags you have to take out the next day and possibly spend a little quality time with someone when it's time to clean.

Carpool to grandma's house

Encourage your family members to carpool instead of fly. While a long drive with some family members may not be very much fun, I promise the trip will be well worth it. You will save some money on gas and maybe even have a fun car ride with family members you haven't seen in a while.

Scrap the wrapping paper

A gift is the same no matter which way it is received. Also, as a kid, I wondered why we bothered wrapping birthday and holiday gifts as I was just going to tear into them. As an alternative to the messy wrapping paper, use gift bags or decorative boxes for gifts for your loved ones. They are just as colorful and can be reused, saving on the constant need to buy wrapping paper. If you are in the mood to wrap, newspaper is another positive alternative. The Sunday paper will surely wrap at least 10 shoes boxes alone.

Recycle Christmas trees

For those of you gearing up to celebrate Christmas (you early birds in November) who are always unsure what to do with your real tree after the holidays, here's a suggestion. By taking a tree to places like the Larimer County Landfill and asking them to recycle your tree, you are converting your holiday decoration into mulch that will be of good use come spring time. No need for a tree to waste away in a dump when it can be protecting your lawn!

Not too hot, not too cold

We all know Colorado weather turns on a dime. While you may or may not be in Colorado for the holidays, make sure to keep heating costs down wherever you are. It's going to get chilly but bundle up and resist the urge to crank up the thermostat dial to 90 degrees.