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Keep Liberty Beautiful: Have a happy — and green — Thanksgiving
Karen Bell
Keep Liberty Beautiful Executive Director Karen Bell.

Dr. Karen Bell

Keep Liberty Beautiful

Thanksgiving is this week, and I am grateful for everything Keep Liberty Beautiful has accomplished this year. You may wonder how you can have a nice Thanksgiving dinner and Be Green! Being Green can happen by adjusting some preparations for the holiday.

According to Recycle-Works, household waste increases by more than 25% from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day. You should start thinking about being environmentally Green as you plan.

Thanksgiving Day is an American holiday loaded with tradition, so why not create a new tradition in your family and Go Green. You can make Thanksgiving a green and eco-friendly celebration from start to finish.

It is not as hard as you think.

This is the time of year that we all can take a few minutes out of our busy schedules to make a green holiday plan. This plan would include a shopping list, food planning, more natural decorations, eco-friendly cleanup supplies, and time to relax and enjoy your family safely.

First up, plan your shopping to use your time and fuel wisely. Do not forget to use those reusable shopping bags.

Look for organic foods and products with minimal packaging that offer the most opportunities to recycle. Try to keep track of how much food is left over each year so you can make a more efficient, less wasteful Thanksgiving dinner in the future.

During the holidays, people waste a tremendous amount of food.

That waste amount to about 28 billion pounds of edible food each year.

That is more than 100 pounds of food per person! One of the best ways to reduce your waste this Thanksgiving is to plan for the meal and practice portion control.

If you buy local, not only can you enjoy fresh food, but you will also support our local economy. Check for farmers’ markets, family farms, community-supported agriculture programs, and u-pick options in your area for the freshest produce, such as eggs, dairy, and grass-fed meat.

Use water on the tap.

Lose the plastic bottled water that creates enormous plastic waste.

Check out the on-counter and system water purifiers to get the healthiest water you can use. If you have several dishes that need to be in the oven at the same temperature, put them in simultaneously to reduce energy use and prep time.

Consider composting your kitchen scraps.

Composting kitchen scraps can have a significant impact. Twenty-four percent of the waste Americans send to landfills is organic waste, meaning kitchen scraps and leftovers. Keeping that waste out of landfills is essential.

Use your lovely china and cloth napkins. If disposable place settings are your only choice, opt for biodegradable and compostable utensils, napkins, and plates, such as those from BiodegradableStore. com. The average dishwasher uses between 7 and 15 gallons of water per cycle. After the meal, fill the dishwasher to capacity before running it to save water and energy.

When it comes to decorations, go natural. Use candles made from soy or vegetable wax. Soy wax is clean burning, without soot or harmful emissions, and has a low melting point, burning at a cooler temperature.

Decorate your table with natural and homemade festive decor. Fill clear vases with pinecones, acorns, and colorful leaves. Carve small slits in wine corks and slide in a piece of paper with a guest’s name to create unique, upcycled place settings.

Add a little extra fun to your table with homemade decorations. With a few simple supplies and a little imagination, you can make incredible eco-friendly Thanksgiving decorations and have a lot of fun as a family.

Have the children participate in a pre-Thanksgiving craft day.

A green Thanksgiving will enrich your family’s holiday experience because you will know that you have made the world a little brighter by reducing your impact on the environment.

And that’s something we all can be thankful for. Whatever else you do on Thanksgiving, make sure to “give thanks!”

Use the moments you have to let people know you are grateful for them. If your circumstances prevent you from spending Thanksgiving with some of the people you love, give them a call, have a Zoom meeting, or email them why they mean so much to you.

The Keep Liberty Beautiful Staff would like you to know that we are always Thankful for Liberty County’s support.

We wish you and your family a safe and Happy Thanksgiving!

If you have questions or need to contact us about KLB programs, please call us at (912) 880-4888 or email

We appreciate you.

Enjoy the holiday!

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