Easy ways to give a gift to Mother Nature this year

MADISON — Have you made your list and checked it twice? If you’re stumped on what to get Mother Nature this holiday season, don’t worry. She’s easy to please with these tips to reduce your impact on the environment this holiday season.

“A few small changes and actions can quickly add up to save money and reduce pollution over the holiday season,” explains Amanda Wegner, creative director at Clean Wisconsin.

Whether you’re hosting at home or heading over the river and through the woods, it’s easy to do something good for the environment this holiday season with these six tips:

  1. Flip the switch Ever wonder what that little switch on the ceiling fan is for? It reverses the fan’s rotation so that warm air is pushed away from the ceiling toward the floor. This simple switch can save 15% on energy costs during the winter. Remember to keep the fan on low so it doesn’t feel drafty.
  2. Light up the night with LEDs Consider replacing the tangled mess of outdoor holiday lights with efficient LED light bulbs. While these lights use up to 90% less energy and offer the same brilliant light, they are not guaranteed to be tangle-free. 
  3. Reuse the wrap Many municipalities do not accept wrapping paper for recycling. Cut down on landfill waste by using newspapers, paper bags or glossy magazines to wrap your gifts. Colorful pictures from last year’s holiday cards can be used to adorn plain wrappings.
  4. Pressure up Before you pack up the sleigh, ensure your car’s tires are properly inflated. Underinflated tires can cost you 10 cents more per gallon.
  5. Make your ho-ho-home more energy efficient A home energy audit can help you save money and energy by finding inefficiencies in your home. Focus on Energy offers many incentives to cover the cost of a home energy audit; contact your local utility to see what’s available.
  6. Give the gift of a Clean Wisconsin Still stumped on what to get that Wisconsin-loving special someone on your list? Give them the gift of a clean environment by purchasing a Clean Wisconsin gift membership at www.cleanwisconsin.org/donate.

“Doing something for Mother Nature this holiday season can be easy and fun,” says Wegner. “From everyone at Clean Wisconsin, have a happy and festive holiday season.”