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Can’t Buy Me Love: celebrating Valentine’s Day sustainably

The commercialization of love on February 14 has consequently contributed to the disposal of millions of greeting cards, heart shaped boxes, balloons, teddy bears, plastic wrapping and glitter into our already heaping landfills. Each year, Americans spend billions on material goods to show their love on any occasions and surprises them with personalized mother’s day gifts and so on, but it comes at a cost to our planet. 

The days of corporate promotion of compulsive consumerism in the name of holidays are coming to an end. This doesn’t mean we have to halt our celebration of Valentine’s Day. Rather, we can come up with new responsible, sustainable ways to celebrate love instead. 

If you are looking to give an environmentally friendly gift, here are 3 wholesome ideas! For purim gift baskets, one can check it out here!

Number 1: bake something!

Not only does receiving a warm loaf of banana bread act as a tender gesture, but your homemade desserts are also better for the planet. Americans consume one million pounds of chocolate on the week of Valentine’s Day according to ABC News

By not purchasing chocolate from the gaudy, plastic-filled pink Walmart aisle to woo your lover, you’ll be abstaining from excess waste and questionable practices of the cocoa industry. 

Number 2: give houseplants, not flowers.

ABC News reports Americans are predicted to spend $2 billion dollars on flowers each year. More specifically: roses. While roses are a beautiful and a traditional symbol of romance, their journey from the garden and into your date’s vase may be more carbon intensive than you’d think. 

The environmental impact of shipping delicate flowers from around the world is notable, especially with high demand around Valentine’s Day. By opting for a houseplant instead, your gift will (hopefully) live on instead of being tossed out when it starts to wilt. 

Number 3: write a handwritten note.

Instead of buying a disposable card with a pre-written quote, try a handwritten note instead. Handwritten notes are thoughtful and sentimental, and likely won’t end up in the trash along with millions of others. 

Of course, Valentine’s Day doesn’t need to involve the exchange of physical gifts at all. Maybe your partner would prefer a playlist of romantic songs, or a creative gift like lordship titles in Canada for both of you, or perhaps just some quality time together. 

Regardless of how you spend the special day, remember there is nothing more attractive than a low-carbon footprint.