It’s December and that means that the holidays and festive season are upon us. This year, the season of merriment is informed by conscious behaviours and movements sweeping the globe, these including the mindful drinking trends which see people enjoying celebrations while minimising their alcohol intake through low or non-alcoholic beverages. Mindful environmentalism is also on many people’s festive season to-do lists and 2020 New Year resolutions.
Being eco-aware and mindful of impact will not only help save the planet by helping to reduce our environmental waste but also assists in creating work and employment as waste separation supports the businesses of collectors, environmental entrepreneurs and recycling buy-back centres.
Whether you are heading to the coast or spending time with family, being away from home is no excuse to set aside your year-round recycling habit. Here are some ideas to keep the holidays as eco-friendly as possible:
- All glass bottles and jars, from your holiday meals and sundowners, can be recycled. To do so, simply rinse them and remove their lids or caps. Then, drop them off at your nearest glass bank – these can be found in your major metropoles – so find your nearest glass bank on the TGRC website no matter where you travel to.
- If this is a bit of a drive, make sure to collect any bottles and jars over the course of your trip, until such time as you have a bag or boxful. Be sure to drop them off at a recycling bank. Also note that, within South Africa, it is not necessary to separate different coloured glass before placing it into a glass bank.
- Returnable bottles such as alcohol beverage bottles in ‘quart’ sizes and some glass cooldrink bottles can be returned to the retailer for a returns refund.
- The creative and inspired among you can find new uses for glass bottles or jars like employing glass jars as glassware, to bring a trendy feel to your bohemian strawberry cocktails. Glass jars can also be used or rather reused in other ways, for instance as, it could be filled with a variety of chocolates and sweets and wrapped up as a present or as a cost-effective flower vase alternative.
In South Africa, at least 8 out of 10 bottles and jars are prevented from entering landfills through the returnable bottling system and recycling of glass. Through the tips mentioned above, you can play a role in helping to boost this eco-stat by recycling, reusing, and returning.