LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The season of giving often comes with a lot of tossing. The National Environmental Education Foundation reports that Americans throw away 25 percent more trash than usual between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Aside from the trash, the rise of online shopping with fast delivery options means more carbon emissions.
At Peace of the Earth in Louisville, shoppers can find gifts with sustainability in mind. The eco friendly store started 14 years ago with owner Leslie Delgado making natural soaps and body products out of her house. Eight years ago, she opened up the store on E. Market Street in NuLu.
The week before Christmas, the store was busy with shoppers like Kavonte Jones looking for gifts to give this holiday season. He said he shops there frequently.
“I’ve started to understand that it’s better to show your morals and adopt better practices instead of going for the cheapest thing around,” Jones said.
Delgado said, over the years, she has noticed more people are thinking in the same way Jones is.
“I have noticed a shift in consumerism. More and more people want to know who made this? Where is it made? What is it made from?” Delgado said.
That observation mirrors a national trend. In a recent survey, consulting firm, Accenture, found half of respondents are opting for more eco friendly options this year. It’s a trend Jones hopes will continue to expand.
“From buying eco friendly stuff, I can help my family adopt better practices while I also shop local and shop better,” Jones said.
If you are not close to eco friendly stores like Peace of the Earth, there are still some steps you can take. For example, you could buy reusable gift wrap. Most of the commercial wrapping paper found in stores is not recyclable. If you cannot find gift wrap that can be recycled, you could always make your own by using paper bags and decorating it with holiday stamps. Also, opt for items that have less packaging. If you cannot find eco friendly products, you could always gift experiences instead of things.
There are some tips for the home as well. Use energy saving LED lights and recycle your Christmas tree after the holiday is over.