Ethical living writer, Lucy Siegle, wrote a great column in today’s Observer magazine about how each year in the UK we chuck away enough wrapping paper to stretch around the equator nine times, if laid end to end. I knew we wasted a lot of paper at Christmas but that figure is immense!
She then points out three major issues with paper:
1. the harvesting of trees, some of which are endangered
2. the process to turn wood fibre into pulp
3. and the disposal of the product – even recycling isn’t always a win-win situation
So what’s in your paper that’s so bad? Synthetic inks, plastics, chlorine, metal-based foils and of course glitters, all of which are not easy to dispose of or recycle.
So what’s the alternative? Be creative! Reuse and recycle pretty papers you receive (something I’ve been doing for years!) or branch out to more alternative papers – Lucy suggests the Observer magazine’s own paper.
Now, I hadn’t thought of that but maybe I’ll give it a go.