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Give back to the environment this Christmas

Christmas is a time for family and friends, but the gift giving season is also a time of excessive waste, which can have detrimental effects on the environment.

So Clean Up Australia Day is encouraging Australians to recycle and cut down on waste.

Australians produce over 40 million tonnes of waste per year, much of which ends up as discarded rubbish and in landfill. Over this Christmas we will also purchase additional items such as Christmas trees, food, packaging and unwanted gifts.

A recent Australian survey by McCrindle Research has shown that 78.5% of Australians have received a present that they didn’t want. 13.7% of people will throw away these unwanted presents - meaning they go unused from manufacturer to landfill.

Clean Up Australia is encouraging Australians to think about active ways we can cut back on waste this Christmas – it’s as simple as making thoughtful purchases, considering how you dispose of waste and reusing leftover Christmas treats.

In 2009, a staggering $38.7 billion was spent on Christmas celebrations. In addition, it is estimated we spent $7.6 billion on food in December, up to 20% of which was thrown away. That equates to 3 million tonnes of food being wasted a year, which could generate as much as 13 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.

Ian Kiernan AO, Chairman and founder of Clean Up Australia, said, “Over the last 20 years, an estimated 237,500 tonnes of rubbish has been removed by Clean Up Australia Day volunteers.”

“Every Australian produces approximately two tonnes of garbage a year - and we need to reduce this. We encourage everyone to be conscious of our waste during this Christmas period and ‘do our bit’ to reduce its impact on our environment.”


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