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Sustainable Diwali 2023

 

Living sustainably need not dull the sparkle of festivals and celebrations. This Diwali, let’s embark on a journey full of good steps that not only ensure your well-being and safety but also add an eco-friendly twist to the festivities.

1. Lights:- 

  • Energy-Efficient Lighting:- Opt for decorative LED lights, string lights, and Diyas which consume up to 80% less electricity than traditional incandescent bulbs and 50% less than CFL. Moreover, they last much longer and hence are more sustainable.
  • Re-Think Diyas:- Support local artisans by purchasing handmade Diyas. You could always consider opting for eco-friendly Diyas made from cow dung or coconut shells.
  • Packaging:- When purchasing Diyas or candles, look for products with minimal packaging to reduce packaging waste.
2. Decorations:-  
  • Reuse and Recycle:- Instead of getting new decorations each year, think about reusing items from past celebrations. If you don’t have them, it’s fine to buy new ones, but try to keep and reuse them going forward. Remember sometimes with a bit of imagination, you can give a new twist to your existing decorations.
  • Natural Elements:- Celebrate nature’s beauty by decorating with fresh flowers and leaves. They not only look lovely but also add a natural fragrance effortlessly. Plus, if you use marigold flowers, they help keep mosquitoes at bay.
  • Rangoli:- Create rangoli designs using natural materials like flower petals and leaves. Avoid using synthetic colors that may be unsafe for your kids, family, co-workers, and the environment.

Pro-Tip: Reuse the flowers used for decoration, rangoli, and puja to make natural room fresheners and Cleaners. 

3. Firecrackers:- 

  • Enjoy firecrackers together so that collectively we use fewer firecrackers and reduce pollution.  
  • Look for green crackers which are safer and better for the environment. 

 4. Gifting:- 

  • Gifts That Grow:- Consider gifting a sapling a potted plant or a plant grow kit. It’s a symbol of growth and sustainability and can be a lasting memory of your Diwali celebration.
  • Digital Gifting:- Consider sending e-gift cards or digital presents. This reduces the need for physical products and packaging and also enables the receiver to buy what they need.
  • Gift-wrapping:- Opt for eco-friendly packaging, or consider wrapping gifts in reusable cloth or scarves. Get eco-friendly gifting ideas on our earlier Blog. 

5. Food and Party:-

  • Food:- Plan your meals to minimize food waste. Share extra food with neighbors or donate it to those in need.
  • Drinkware- BYOB (Bring Your Own Bottle):- Encourage your guests to bring their reusable water bottles. This simple act can significantly reduce the need for disposable bottles.
  • Put all lemons together:- Keep a bowl or any container where any lemons post-use can be put. These can be used for cleaning later or converted to natural Cleaners. 

6. Declutter and donate:-

Before Diwali, many households engage in a common practice known as “Diwali cleaning and decluttering.” Rather than throwing away your old belongings, consider giving them to someone who can make use of them. What you consider trash might be a valuable resource to others. 

You can explore decluttering WhatsApp groups in your local community or join your city’s Freecycle group. You can also check out these two Facebook groups: Dariya Dil Dukaan (दरिया दिल दुकान): Gift Economy Pan India ©  or Give Stuff Away for FREE (Mumbai).

Alternatively, you can give them to an orphanage/ old age home or the helpers in your home society or workplace. 

These Good steps will help reduce unnecessary waste and give your old stuff a new life.

7. After-Celebration Waste Management:-

Don’t get overwhelmed if you still have to keep some packaged items in your Diwali celebrations. In the beginning, it’s challenging to eliminate packaged items altogether but we can dispose of them better. You can put up recycling cartons or bins and encourage guests to put recyclable items like tetra paks, cans, PET bottles, beer bottles, and wrappers in the recycling bin.

These good steps can be taken not only at your home but also at your workplace along with your teams. Our top five things that can be done at offices: 

Reusable decorations: Take the help of the housekeeping team and allocate a place where all festival decorations can be labeled and stored safely. Reuse them year after year and keep the celebrations going without increasing the environmental footprint.  

  • Nature-themed Rangoli: Use natural materials like flower petals, rice flour, or other grains. 
  • Sustainable Gifting: Be it gifting the employees, customers, suppliers, or vendors; let’s choose sustainable gifts (SF main product page link can be put here)  and Wrapping as well.  
  • Office Party: Challenge the team to have a party without creating any food waste. In case reusable cutlery is not available for the entire team, ask the team to bring an empty tiffin box and enjoy the festivities meal without creating disposable trash for housekeeping. 
  • Before and after cleanup: Recharge your workspaces by removing things not needed. At the same time dispose of them responsibly as a lot of that can be recycled (link of recycling blog if that’s activated before this one) – old broken furniture, electronic items no longer in use, papers, newspapers, etc.  Similarly, you can have a waste sorting game and clean up post-party so that leftover packaging, bottles, etc go to the proper places. 

Let’s celebrate this Diwali with one Goodstep and preserve the true essence of the festival—spreading light and happiness. Let’s cherish our traditions while caring for the planet we call home.  Through mindful decisions, we can responsibly brighten both our own lives and the world that surrounds us. 

So which Goodstep you have decided to take this Diwali? Do write to us about the good steps you are already taking at [email protected]


 

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