At first glance, Halloween and being environmentally conscious do not seem to go hand in hand. We buy socially relevant costumes new each year, meant to be worn once, then they sit in the back of our closets until we finally get rid of them. Individually wrapped Halloween candy is given out and consumed in excess; after all, that’s the spirit of Halloween. Now, I’m not suggesting that we curtail our chocolate and candy intake. There are just a few things that we can do to make our Halloween festivities a little bit greener.
When it comes to Halloween costumes, you can make DIY costumes from clothes you already own, or clothes found in vintage and charity shops. Reusing clothing instead of purchasing is extremely beneficial for the environment, as slowing the cycle of consumerism could have huge impacts on reducing your water, carbon, and waste footprint. If you do decide to buy a new costume, think about donating it when Halloween is over, so someone can enjoy it next season.
When considering what candy to purchase, it is important to remember that the individual candy wrappers cannot be recycled, and most likely will just end up in landfill waste. These wrappers are often too small to be sorted by the machines used in recycling plants, and to add to this they are often made of a combination of materials such as plastic, foil and paper that requires separation at the material level. If you are looking to buy candy to give out to trick-or-treaters, consider buying candy packaged in paper. Being more eco-friendly around Halloween can be as simple as being more aware and making better choices.