FREDERICTON (GNB) – The following message about being environmentally friendly during the holidays was released today by Environment and Local Government Minister Serge Rousselle:

Every year, we raise awareness of the importance of reducing, reusing and recycling during the holidays as a means of protecting our environment and mitigating climate change. This year, we move beyond raising awareness and ask New Brunswickers to take an active role in helping to address climate change.

At this time last year, our government released Transitioning to a Low-Carbon Economy – New Brunswick’s Climate Change Action Plan, and, just last week, we introduced New Brunswick’s first ever Climate Change Act. We are forging a path forward with a comprehensive and accountable plan, where we must all do our part.

The holidays produce more waste than other times of the year, so we ask New Brunswickers to be mindful in making choices about both their consumption and their waste. Some ways to take action include:

  • Buy a real Christmas tree. It can be disposed of in an environmentally friendly way, and the purchase also supports local businesses or non-profit organizations.
  • Choose “green” gifts or donate to an environmental cause in lieu of a gift.
  • Purchase energy-efficient electronics; look for the Energy Star logo or EnerGuide label. Recycle old electronics through the new electronic waste recycling program.
  • Buy rechargeable batteries for toys or other gifts. Recycle old batteries through the household battery recycling program.
  • Reuse wrapping paper or gift bags, or use newspaper or recycled paper to wrap gifts since most commercial wrapping paper cannot be recycled.
  • Use LED Christmas lights to minimize energy consumption and turn off the lights before going to bed.
  • Plan your grocery purchases to avoid excessive food waste.
  • Recycle beverage bottles, cans and cardboard.

The holiday season is an opportunity to spend time with family and friends, with a special focus on bringing joy to children. There is no better act we can do together as New Brunswickers than to make a stronger commitment to protect the environment for the next generation. Let us all do our part.

I wish all New Brunswickers a peaceful and wonderful holiday.