12 Days of Waste-Mas? How Much Aussies Waste Over Christmas

Waste Management in Australia Christmas is a time for giving, receiving — and stuffing tons of wrapping paper, leftover food, and other unwanted stuff in the garbage bin.

For Australians, this seems like a usual holiday thing. According to New Galaxy research, about 71 percent of Aussies would receive 20 million dud gifts, which equate to 20.6 million gifts. This corresponds to a $630 million worth of unwanted Christmas presents, which is shockingly $110 million more than last year.

Unwanted gifts are valued at $68 on average. The survey also revealed that in-laws are the usual givers of unwanted gifts, while about 9 million Australians are found to be re-gifting the items they received.

Splurging, Adding Waste During the Holidays

Apart from these shocking numbers, Australians are also reported to have embarked on a $46.7 billion splurge during the holidays.

Street litter has also risen with countless Christmas events outdoors, particularly on parks and the beach, according to Keep Australia Beautiful Chief Executive Officer Philip Robinson. He added that sometimes this happens because people do not have access to a bin.

Reducing Christmas Waste

It is possible to have low waste Christmas without being a Grinch. For instance, you can use recyclable wrapping paper and cards — or simply stop using wrapping paper altogether. Write a shopping list to reduce your leftovers as well.

After the party’s over, the least you can do is to recycle whatever you can, and hire a skip bin for what you can’t. Kwikskips.com.au says some Armadale skip bin hire companies will deliver your waste to a landfill facility to be broken down.

Recycle paper bags, wrapping paper, cardboard tubes, paper gift tags and greeting cards, and envelopes; a good idea is to cut them up to make next year’s festive gift tags. When it comes to unwanted presents, sell or donate them rather than throw them away. If you received some new cookware, recycle old pots and pans in your green recycling bin.

While it’s okay to indulge in Christmas delights, spare a thought for the environment. So trim your waste — but don’t stop when the festive season is over, and maintain the zero waste spirit year round.