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LAST MINUTE "GREEN GIFT" IDEAS

Release Date: 12/15/1998
Contact Information: Bonnie Lomax 215-814-5542

Looking for a gift that will warm the ever-green heart of that ardent environmentalist?  Last-minute shopping and out of ideas?  Just want to make a statement about saving the planet?  

Well, now you can save money and reduce consumption of natural resources (like paper, water, and the energy that goes into making all those "must buy" gifts that never get used.  

Why not befriend the earth while letting that special someone know that you’re thinking about him or her?  You can cut costs and consume fewer environmental resources if you try a few of these gift suggestions.

Give memberships to a museum, zoo or conservancy, or gift certificates to active participation places like a nature center gift shop.

Arrange for a private concert (the music departments of area colleges might know
students who would be interested).

Adopt an animal, either in the wild or through a zoo.

Contribute to the purchase and preservation of an acre of land - rain forest or other.

Offer an experience such as getaway weekends, lessons, guided tours, tickets to concerts, theater, movies, etc.
 
Donate membership in an environmental organization.

Provide coupons for services such as car washing, pet-sitting, baby-sitting, shoveling snow -- services the recipient can redeem during the coming year.

Deliver a homemade dinner to the recipient’s house.

Escort a special day trip to nearby places of interest to someone.

Develop a holiday web site to share messages and photos; also, send your annual
holiday letter or card by e-mail.


Invest on behalf of family members in stocks of ‘green’ companies, ‘green’ mutual funds, and savings bonds.

Donate your special talent, such as photography, gardening, or hairstyling.

Put together a book of favorite recipes.

Decorate a family calendar with photographs, and mark important dates like birthdays
and anniversaries.

Buy someone golf, tennis music, or sailing lessons.

Sponsor a child refugee or donate to a homeless shelter in someone’s name .

Call your local social services agency and give a donation to families in need.

Purchase alternative energy products such as a solar powered radio or Energy Star VCR.  Refinish a piece of furniture (using water-based finishes).

Offer to perform a service that someone has been putting off such as cleaning out a closet or junk drawer, ironing, sewing/mending, home repairs, organizing a scrap book from boxes of photos and memorabilia.

    Order fresh flowers or a fruit or food basket delivered once a month for a year.  

Order a gift of a tree or shrubbery, or have a tree planted in someone’s honor.

Find and distribute seeds from heirloom plants (for biodiversity).

Send a food basket to a needy family or a holiday gift to a needy child.  

Organize a nature scavenger hunt.

Hike in a park accompanied by a gift of a bug box or a bug or bird identifier book.

Happy Holidays !

(These suggestions were prepared by Nancy Grundahl, an environmental engineer in EPA Region III’s environmental services division.)


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